Hobsons Bay City Council is set to ramp up its e-government efforts following the recent adoption of its digital strategy, which signaled some steps forward for the Council who will launch live-streamed meetings this week, with a brand new website also on the way.
With the first live stream set to broadcast this week’s mayoral election on November 9, it will be the first ordinary council meeting ever to be beamed back to residents who will be able to watch the action live anywhere and on any device.
As well as being able to watch meetings in real time, the live streaming function will host an archive of previously recorded Council meetings, bookmarked per agenda item, enabling the community to view their topics of interest quickly and easily.
Speaking on the launch of live streaming, Hobsons Bay Mayor Angela Altair said Council hopes to provide better access to its discussions and decision-making, making the process more transparent and engaging for the community.
“I am very excited about this step we are taking as it opens the door to even more visibility, openness and accountability. Making council meetings more accessible with technologies such as live streaming is a key component of my Mayoral Program,” she said.
“Regardless of life’s everyday demands, we want our community to be able to access our meetings as they are happening instead of reading or hearing about the outcomes after the fact.”
“Live streaming allows people to see councillors debating issues and matters of policy first-hand, giving a greater context to how they arrive at their decisions and to see and hear the councillors’ views and how we advocate for our community.”
It is understood that the live streaming will replace the audio recordings of meetings that are currently available as podcasts on Council’s website. The council meetings will be hosted on a live streaming platform which will be accessible via Council’s website.
Striving to meet community expectations to provide more information and services online that are simple, easy to use, fast and automatic, Hobsons Bay City Council will also launch a new website in the coming months.
The new website is another part of a raft of recommendations from Council’s digital strategy which will see the Council invest in technology to become more sustainable, efficient and accessible, increasing its online services for a growing community.
Willy and Hobby can reveal that Hobsons Bay City Council is transitioning to a new website product in 2018 called Open Cities, and it is understood that Council is currently moving its public website content over to the new product with its existing web provider.
The new website is said to put ‘customer focus at the forefront’ of its layout and design, with a more logical layout of information and ease of use with its information architecture, and enhanced search functions.
All aspects of the new website are believed to be centered around making transacting with Council far easier, with a focus on improvements to its online forms as well as an improved menu system.
Willy and Hobby can reveal that the new website is due to go live to the community for consultation and usability testing in November and furthermore to go live as Council’s official website in early December 2018.