Providence City Council to Hold Virtual Meeting Via Teleconference

Mar 19, 2020 | 0 comments

Participants Can Call Into the Meeting With Their Phones

Providence will be the first Council Body to use this Teleconferencing Technology

In light of the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak which has affected many of us here in Rhode Island, the Governor issued an executive order earlier this week lifting the Open Meetings Act (OMA) restrictions for public meetings.

The order allows for adequate alternative means of public access such as over phone, internet, and audio or videoconferencing when it comes to public body meetings.

“Our goal as a City Council is to be as transparent as possible,” stated City Council President Sabina Matos (Ward 15). “We have decided to move from livestreaming to teleconferencing due to the rapid spread of the virus here in Rhode Island. In the last 48 hours, we have seen an increase of 21 positive infections, totaling 44 positive infections here in Rhode Island as of 1:30 PM today. It’s with that in mind that we have made the difficult decision to host our meeting using a teleconference line, a widely used and implemented practice. This will allow for residents to hear the discussions as it happens by our body in real-time.”

In light of this executive order, in addition to the prior executive order limiting gatherings of more than 25 people, and to protect the health of our Councilors, staff, and our residents Council President Sabina Matos has decided to seek alternative public access mediums for tonight’s Council meeting. The City Council will be using a teleconferencing platform for tonight’s meeting.

Call-In Information is Below:
Please dial: 1-646-558-8656
Pin: 692739810#
Press # again to enter the conference waiting room.

This tough decision is premised on an urgency to preserve public health while also maintaining the spirit of an open and transparent governmental process.

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