Cody City Council members are questioning whether it is worthwhile to spend $50,000 or more to replace the equipment needed to televise and record city council meetings.
Short answer: No. Don’t spend money you don’t have.
While we fervently support openness in government at all levels, we do not see a need for broadcasting the meetings.
City council meetings are open to the public and anyone interested in the proceedings may attend.
We doubt many residents are watching broadcasts of council meetings. The city is currently conducting a survey to answer that question.
We would be surprised if a lot of people are watching.
If there is an issue that concerns citizens, more than likely they will attend the meeting in person.
Regarding the value of recording the meetings for viewing in the future, we feel that also may be overrated.
Especially considering the website archives page has a gap of missing recorded video of about 17 months.
Meanwhile, city council proceedings are required by law to be published and all past meeting minutes are printed and available to the public.
The City of Cody does not have the money to be spending $50,000 on broadcasting equipment.
For this year the city passed a budget projecting a deficit of roughly $600,000 in the general fund and members have said that is not sustainable long-term.
We hope council members decide broadcasting meetings is an unnecessary expenditure at this time or they find another way to finance the equipment purchase.