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Agenda Item No. 12

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Democratic Services Committee: 24th July 2013

 

Report of the Head of Democratic Services

 

Webcasting of Council Meetings

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To update Members on the utilisation of Welsh Government funding for the piloting of webcasting of certain meetings.

Recommendation

That the current position be noted.

Reason for the Recommendation

To keep Members informed.

 

Background

2.             Towards the end of the last financial year, the Minister for Local Government and Communities announced the making available of funding to local authorities to support the broadcast of Council meetings, preparations for remote attendance and the development of Town and Community Council websites.  Each principal council was allocated £40,000 to assist with broadcasting and working towards remote attendance, plus an extra £500 for each Town and Community Council in its area.  Separate reports in respect of remote attendance and Town and Community Council websites are included on the agenda.

Relevant Issues and Options

3.             In accepting the offer of funding, the Council will need to evidence that piloting of webcasting of some meetings has occurred by the end of the financial year.  Members will be aware of the adaptations to the Council Chamber, which will be carried out over the next couple of months.  The original works have been expanded upon in order to accommodate the equipment necessary to provide for the piloting of webcasting.  Discussions will continue over the next few months regarding the most feasible way of piloting webcasting of certain meetings.  The Welsh Government have been informed accordingly. 

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

4.             Consideration will need be given to ongoing revenue costs in terms of infrastructure and staff time.  It is important to note that the funding provided by Welsh Government was on a "one off" basis. 

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

5.             There are no direct implications arising from the report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

6.             The Council is required to comply with the provisions of the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011.  Whilst developing the provision for the possibility of remote attendance is a legislative requirement under the Measure, this does not, in fact, apply to webcasting.

Crime and Disorder Implications

7.             None.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

8.             Webcasting of meetings in general widens public awareness and accessibility of the democratic processes.

Corporate/Service Objectives

9.             The Council is committed to continuing to develop means of public engagement and participation in the democratic processes.

Policy Framework and Budget

10.        The Terms of Reference of the Democratic Services Committee include "to have regard to Welsh Ministerial guidance when exercising its function".

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

11.        This is an internal matter and, therefore, no consultation has been necessary.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

12.        Corporate Resources

Background Papers

Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011

Letter from Welsh Government: 28th January 2013

 

Contact Officer

Jeff Wyatt, Head of Democratic Services, Tel: (01446) 709408

 

Officers Consulted

Managing Director

Head of Strategic ICT

Responsible Officer:

Jeff Wyatt, Head of Democratic Services

 

 

 

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