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Reader's view: Streaming council meetings an unnecessary expense

Hold on there! A May 30 News Tribune editorial praised the Duluth City Council for letting us see its meetings live on the city website. That was just a wee bit over the top (Our View: “Applaud added council openness”).

Audio files of meetings have been available on the city website for a long time, including the off-camera Thursday meetings. The Monday meetings have been live on KUMD-FM and its website.

The adding of live and archived video of the meetings is only an expensive bonus. The video’s aspect ratio has not even been adjusted to the proper 16x9 proportions. Video simply

doesn’t work well in the council chambers; it’s too dark.

There is much information that should be on the expensive new website but is not: City Council meeting packets; council meeting audio files archived in perpetuity; DEDA agendas, minutes and audio files (these were on the old website); library board minutes (not posted in months) and meeting packets; and similar information for other city commissions.

When the Spirit Mountain board meetings actually are noticed, an agenda and meeting packet are made, and the public is allowed to know when and where the meetings are, then the News Tribune can shower its praise on the front page.

Bryan Olson

St. Paul