Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Prince Rupert Council Transmission scrambles to Kitimat coverage Monday night

The District of Kitimat's council
feed made a guest appearance Monday
night on the City of Prince Rupert website
For a few minutes perhaps, those viewing the City of Prince Rupert Council session on the City of Prince Rupert website may have wondered whether we had been invaded by our neighbours to the Southeast, as the official video record of Prince Rupert Civic governance was zapped out and replaced by that of the Kitimat District council.

Things started out pretty good, the first eighteen minutes or so for the Prince Rupert Council session running through the Agenda at a pretty good clip, when suddenly like the days of the old SCTV television program, those watching the streaming video feed on the City website saw the video freeze and the image above suddenly appear.

The plug on Prince Rupert was pulled for good shortly after 7:20 with a ten minute pre-game show from Kitimat being streamed live on the Prince Rupert website, following the ten minutes of background chatter (which left a Rupertite to feel like a spy in the opposing teams camp) they commenced with their Regular Council session and, since we were there anyways (or at least viewing through the Prince Rupert website) we took a few notes as to how they run things in the land of Alcan.

All in All, Mayor Phil Germuth runs a pretty smooth Council meeting, they check off their agenda items with a quick pace and find time to discuss some of the key issues, with what appeared to be all six members providing for a full engagement towards many of the topics that were brought to the table.

A surprise opportunity to look into how they
do civic governance in Kitimat was streamed
through the City of Prince Rupert website Monday

There were also some interesting things done in Kitimat that perhaps the Prince Rupert council collective might wish to explore, one in particular was how they handled the monthly Police report from the Kitimat Detachment, something that the City of Prince Rupert does not include as part of its Council sessions.

The Officer in Charge would recount the listings of the offences in the community and what measures that the members had taken to address them, as well as to offer up any notes on what items of interest the local force wished to draw attention to Council.

Then the Council members took their turns asking a number of tough questions of the Detachment head, inquiring about incidents, plans to address concerns in the community and other areas of policing.

All of it took less than fifteen minutes, but those looking for answers for situations in the community would certainly feel that they had been served well by their elected representatives and their police force.

As an additional note, the Kitimat Agenda also features reports from both the  Kitimat RCMP detachment and the Kitimat Fire Department, both of which highlight the range of service calls that the Department takes each month

A Police Report and Q and A session with
Kitimat Council members was one  element
that was reviewed on the night

The Mayor of Kitimat also asked for any questions from any media members in attendance, and though none were asked on the night, the opportunity for reporters to ask questions in a public, on the record setting, is an interesting approach towards accountability and transparency.

The Council collective from the Aluminum City even held a draw to assign seating placements for the Council members when they return to their duties in the New Year, an element of the meeting that really should have featured the music from the game musical chairs to highlight the democratic approach to seat assignments.

They also reviewed how the process of selection for a new Staff Sergeant in charge for the detachment works, as well as some notes that the Mayor had made for the Highways Department related to the road between Terrace and Kitimat.

Since we were apparently set to receive the full broadcast on the night, we stayed through to the end, intrigued as the Mayor of Kitimat went around the table at the very end of the evening to ask each and every council member if they had any final comments for the night, with the majority of the six members offering up some parting thoughts on their evening, or calling attention to issues that they wished to share with the community.

There were even a couple of themes that would prove to be of interest to someone tuning in, albeit unexpectedly, from Prince Rupert.

As part of a discussion on plans for expansion of services at Mills Memorial Hospital, Mayor Phil Germuth noted that the prospect of an expanded hospital footprint in Terrace has resulted in some concerns to be heard from communities outside of the Terrace area and he noted that Kitimat should stand with those communities, like Prince Rupert and Smithers, to ensure that they don't lose any of their current health services.

Another regional theme was also up for discussion, with the Council members exploring the issue of the upcoming hearings into Greyhound service in the North, with Kitimat Council considering a suggestion that the District send a delegation to appear at those hearings to contribute to that discussion to the Terrace meetings.

Those with an interest in some of those themes can review how the Kitimat Council sessions work from their website archive. However, the Monday session from the District has yet to be posted to that archive to this point.

Once the unexpected review of Kitimat's pursuit of civic governance was complete the City of Prince Rupert video feed returned to its usual notification that the Prince Rupert broadcast is currently offline.

We now return to our regularly scheduled programming
on the City of Prince Rupert Website

So far, there has been no indication through any of the city's information portals as to the nature of the troubles for the streamcast for the Prince Rupert city Council session of Monday.

If all goes well, those with an interest in the work of the Mayor and Six Council members can catch up to their work through the replay of the night available on the City's You Tube Video Archive page.

For more items of interest from Prince Rupert City Council see our archive page here.

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