Letter: Broadcasting Public Meetings is Key

WILTON, Conn. - The following is a letter from the Wilton League of Women Voters regarding the availability of televised local government meetings.

At a recent Board of Finance meeting, one board member wondered whether anyone watched the “off season” Board of Finance meetings on Channel 79, Wilton’s government access television channel, and whether such broadcasts are truly needed. The Wilton League of Women Voters wants the board to know that our members greatly appreciate the chance to watch Board of Finance meetings from their homes and that they tune in regularly to see what’s on Channel 79. 

Our organization, on the local, state, and national levels, has always supported the basic principles on which government access television was founded — open, transparent government, the public’s right to information and the importance of promoting citizen participation in their government. We believe that regular, ongoing communication with the public is critically important, especially in a time of economic challenges for our community and for our state.

To this end, we encourage expansion — not a reduction — of the local programming on Wilton’s government access channel. Our government access channel should be adequately funded to allow for broadcasting not only Board of Selectmen and Board of Finance meetings, but also town meetings, public hearings and meetings of other government boards and commissions. 

With the newly installed camera equipment in the Town Hall Annex, we are looking forward to regular broadcasts of the Planning and Zoning Commission and other meetings held there.

The interest is out there. Let’s use our government channel and our town website to reach out to our citizens, to publicize the volunteer commitment of our board members and commissioners, and to encourage the public’s participation in their local government.

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