Despite the COVID-19 public health crisis, Lacombe County has continued to hold in-person Council meetings and has allowed the public to attend Council meetings. Under the current provincial guidelines, a maximum of 15 people are allowed to participate in Council meetings, including Council and staff, in addition to physical distancing requirements. To allow for more accessible public involvement and attendance, Council recently voted in favour of live streaming all Council meetings and associated public hearings through Zoom during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Physical distancing restrictions won’t be lifted anytime soon, which limits the number of people allowed in Council Chambers. We know there will be meeting topics or public hearings that the public will want to have a voice in,” said Reeve Paula Law. “We have tried a few options, like having a spill-out space in our lobby for times when we might be over-capacity. However, Council felt that a safer solution is to open up Council meetings and public hearings through Zoom video conferencing.”
Until COVID-19 restrictions have lifted, Zoom technology will allow for the public to comment on matters that concern them, if permitted by the Chair.
Rules during a Zoom Lacombe County Council meeting/public hearing?
The public is welcome to attend virtually through the Zoom video conferencing system. The public will be able to listen/observe the entire meeting, but like in face-to-face meetings, there will only be certain times that the public can comment. These opportunities include:
- During a public hearing when public feedback is requested;
- Public delegations to Council (pre-registration required); and
- when permitted by the Chair/Reeve
How to access a Lacombe County Council Meeting via Zoom?
Lacombe County currently subscribes to a monthly Zoom license, which can accommodate up to 100 people. The June 11, 2020 meeting will be the first County meeting to use Zoom video conferencing. The meeting link and instructions on how to access a Zoom meeting will be posted on the County website (www.lacombecounty.com), and will also be shared on the County’s social media channels.
Please check the County’s website, www.lacombecounty.com, to find Council meeting schedule and the dates of future public hearings.