Cottesloe council to investigate recording of meetings

A PROPOSAL to modernise Cottesloe Council meetings by making recordings for the public and having a large television screen displaying the agenda was doubted by some councillors last week.

Councillor Mark Rodda said recordings could “push detailed thinking by councillors underground”, and because the councillors acted as a group the opinions of individuals were “not relevant”.

“I personally think all councillors should be prepared to stand by their views, in light of personal scrutiny,” change proponent Cr Sally Pyvis said.

Cr Pyvis said recordings would not be the equivalent of Parliament’s Hansard, and would only be available when the public or a councillor challenged the accuracy of meetings’ minutes.

She wanted an electronic TV screen in the chamber so the public and councillors could follow the agenda and changes to recommendations.

A similar screen is used by neighbouring Claremont and Peppermint Grove councils.

Cr Pyvis’ other requests to increase the council’s public accountability where public statement times at the agenda briefing session in the week before the monthly meetings, and a review of the standing orders that control the procedure of full meetings.

Mayor Jo Dawkins said a review of standing orders was done in 2013 and would not be needed again.

The recommendation on recordings was changed so the recording could only be heard at the council, after a request to chief executive Mat Hunfrey.

The impact of a large TV in the heritage, wood-panel council chamber would be investigated before report at April’s meeting.