BY MAIRE O’NEILL
Los Alamos County Council will resume in-person meetings in Council Chambers in the Municipal Building beginning June 8 with provisions for public comment to take place by Zoom.
In-person meetings were discontinued in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With the County’s current turquoise status within the state’s reopening framework, Councilors seemed more comfortable about the prospect of meeting in-person.
County Manager Harry Burgess noted that Council Chambers has been set up with plexiglass between the seats on the dais and that while maintaining the 6-foot social distancing rule, about 25 people could be in the audience area. Most of the time, boards and commissions will be able to meet in Council Chambers also.
“We are looking at some options. We believe we can accomplish the Zoom interface. The suggestion is we do it for public comment only. We anticipate that we will be able to share the video feed – definitely on Granicus,” Burgess said. “The biggest concern with Granicus and Zoom is there’s a time delay and from the perspective of running a meeting in person – you would be conducting two if we also had all of the Council looking at the Zoom. The idea is we would pipe the Zoom into the IT Room and could flip the switch for public comment – and have only the audio in the chamber.”
Burgess noted that the more options introduced the more problems can arise. Council members were in agreement that boards and commissioners would be able to return to in-person meetings in their own time.