Council going down the (You) Tube
Published 22 Jun 2012 08:45 10 Comments
A WEST Fife councillor can't wait to see Fife Council go down the tube - YouTube, that is.
Rosyth councillor Douglas Chapman (pictured) is calling for all council meetings to be put up on the video-sharing website or podcasted, so Fifers can monitor how decisions affecting their lives and communities are made.
The SNP councillor raised the matter at the education, social and communities scrutiny committee on Wednesday.
He said, "Many councillors are very concerned that the new cabinet system introduced by Labour, independents and the Tories is undemocratic.
"It puts the key decisions about how Fife's £1billion budget is spent in the hands of very few councillors and gives the ordinary backbencher little time or chance to properly scrutinise the cabal's decisions.
"One way of allaying our fears would be for all meetings, including the new executive and policy groups, to be televised either by podcast or via a social media outlet such as YouTube.
"This would bring a level of openness and transparency to the whole process and would allow Fifers from Kincardine to St Andrews access to their council and allow them to monitor how decisions were being made on their behalf."
A cross-party decision was made last year instructing council officers to explore the recording of meetings and making them available to the public.
Mr Chapman added, "This is exactly what Labour members asked for before the election.
"That decision was agreed across the parties as we had nothing to hide and the SNP welcomed the proposal to see how we could televise all meetings."
Have your say. Post a comment on this article.
Jun 22, 10:37
This could be a very interesting idea. I wouldn't want to watch every meeting, but if Labour were closing my kid's school, or cutting services, then I'd like to see who made the decision and how they made the decision. More power to your elbow, Councillor Chapman !
Recommend? Yes 14 No 1
Jun 22, 13:08
Jun 25, 11:11
Jun 25, 15:00
No need to use You-Tube.
Fife Council has a perfectly good web-site to host these videos.
and lets's go-the-whole-hog - stream the meetings live so that there's no sleekit editing taking place.
Recommend? Yes 7 No 1
Jun 25, 17:09
Jun 25, 22:33
Yup good idea. Will be good to watch and see how Labour are going to generate the funds to build the 3500 new houses they promised in their manifesto. Will be amazing, seeing as in over 20 years of them being in power before they built a massive......................6. And that was nationally over Scotland! The Kirkcaldy Kremlin back to their old ways already I believe. This will hold the Labour/Tory coalition to account.
Recommend? Yes 5 No 3
Jun 26, 10:15
Jun 26, 16:20
Probably because there was no need. There was a democracy then. Now we have commitee style council, with misrepresentation of the numbers. Snp get 26 councillors, but only get 3 in the commitees. The 'independents' numer 4 in election but get 3 on commitee. The Tories get 3 elected and get 2 on commitee. I suppose they have to be nice to their Tory coalition partners, but so much for Labour's backing of proportional representation (only when it suits, typical Labour). With the TV cameras, their lies and dirty tricks will be there for the public to see.
Recommend? Yes 6 No 3
Jun 26, 16:24
Douglas Chapman is the last person I'd expect to suggest something like this. When I complained to him about rail fares, his reply was along the lines of "Be glad you have a train service - there's no station where I live" indeed.
I'm pretty sure I recognise him from the brilliant protest organised by the music pupils that were about to lose their tuition, their teachers and their instruments...If I remember correctly, Mr Chapman and his pals came down for the free concert, before going to vote through the proposals to axe the tuition anyway.
If it makes councils more accountable, then I'm all for it, but it is typical SNP scaremongering to imply that an opposition party is behaving in an "undemocratic" manner.
Oh, and there's not a Labour-Tory coalition...Dave Dempsey doesn't have that much power (luckily).
Recommend? Yes 6 No 4
Jun 28, 22:55
It probably is politicking, but it's still a great idea.
Council meetings are supposed to be in public for good reasons and this would widen the potential audience considerably. If councillors were aware that they might find their performances going viral, that might well concentrate their minds wonderfully. And why stop at the Council? What about the Health Board, the Police Board (for as long as it still exists) and any other public body's board? There are potential dangers - such as the real decisions being made elsewhere. But transparency is a great discipline on those in power and usually leads to better decision-making.
Recommend? Yes 2 No 0