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City councils are there to govern municipalities, and finding the right way to govern requires frequent meetings to find the right solutions that help the community as a whole. Now, there are good ways to govern, and there are some not-so-good ways to govern. You can’t stop running a city even if there’s a pandemic going on. On the contrary, it is even more critical for the city council to hold municipal council meetings via live streams, even if in-person meetings can’t be held.
That’s where Neo Meet can help you. We offer specialized video conferencing solutions to city councils that make governing easy. So we thought we should provide you with simple ways to make municipal meetings better. In the following passages, you will find steps that guarantee better municipal council meetings better. So let’s check them out!
The chair of a municipal city council meeting is critical. A competent Chair is a prepared chair. They facilitate fair and equitable speaking time and are under the council’s procedural policies. The chair is also mindful of the time allotted to complete the meeting agenda.
There needs to be respect between the CAO and mayor/warden. There needs to be a common understanding of each meeting’s priorities to find the best solution to ensure each subject gets the attention it deserves. It’s their job to ensure that critical issues are not dealt with in a vacuum and that no member of the council or staff feels disenfranchised.
The municipal council meetings should keep a focused agenda based on critical topics. It sets the stage and tone for the discussion to follow. Any city council agenda should be fixed and distributed in advance. However, only in extraordinary or emergencies should additional items be entertained.
Vetted information is the only way to ensure better decisions are made. Therefore, you must ensure that the agenda package includes the material necessary for a fact-based and informed discussion. It is essential where a matter is coming forward for debate and a final decision. Remember, you cannot simply “wing” it.
Clarity is paramount if you want to make your municipal meetings better and impactful. Make sure you let all the councilors and everyone involved to know what’s to be expected. Is there an immediate decision required? Will there be future deliberations? Is the matter on the agenda as an information item only? These are all the things you should be clear about and any other agenda that’s on the city council meeting. You have to eliminate the guesswork entirely and keep the focus on matters most requiring attention.
You have to make sure you prepare and circulate the agenda beforehand. Make sure everyone reads and understands the material so that everyone can come prepared and ask good questions and participate in informed discussions.
If you want your city council meetings to inform sound decision-making, you have to make sure your staff is involved with the work. Ask your team to share views, particularly on contentious or tricky issues. Ask them for reports and recommendations wherever possible and is appropriate. Then, distribute the report and ensure the author is available to answer and assist the council in further meetings.
Now, we understand that perfect information cannot often be available, nor is everyone heard all the time during the city council meetings, and delays and procrastination never produce good results. However, city councils need to make timely decisions. The council is always expected to make the best possible decision with the information they have. As a municipality member, you have to recognize there’s real public benefit in having the courage and discipline to make a timely decision regularly and move on once you have.
City council meetings are there to facilitate debate and invite discussions that will include a wide range of perspectives and opinions. The items on the agenda are then voted on, amended, or dealt with. However, not everyone will be happy with the decision. Keep in mind that debate and disagreement are fundamental to avoid groupthink. Make sure your council always strives for collegiality and nurtures an environment that respects and reconciles divergent views. Remember fostering hostilities are never suitable for those you serve.
If you want to ensure your municipal city council meetings are better than before, then make sure you keep a record of items that needs a follow-up. Please keep track of the actions that need to be taken and who is responsible for completing them. Make sure you keep the list and use it to be captured in the minutes and carried forward as a standing agenda item at following meetings until the agenda is completed.
So there you go, these are the steps that guarantee better municipal council meetings. Now, if you follow these simple ways, it will make your municipal meetings better. However, to ensure complete success even during remote meetings, you need a comprehensive video conferencing solution. That’s where Neo Meet comes in. We offer full video conferencing solutions to city councils and governments to ensure their governance is easy.
So if you want to know more about our video conferencing solutions, then feel free to get in touch with us. If you have any other questions, you can drop them in the comments below or send them in on our socials, and we will answer them all for you. And with that being said, that’s about all we have for you today. We will come back with something new for you soon. Until then, see ya!