City of Charleston votes to hold virtual public meetings

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Lamar Elementary School principal Erin Honeycutt sets up a “Zoom” class for first through fifth graders to learn art from Holly Triplett in Meridian, Miss., Tuesday, March 24, 2020. The COVID-19 and coronavirus has forced area schools to close and use technology for online teaching and learning. At this time Lamar is closed until April 13th and will then re-evaluate as to continue their closure. (Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star via AP)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – On Monday, Charleston City Council passed a temporary ordinance “that allows for public input to take place during virtual meetings of Council, boards, and commissions.”

The ordinance was passed after Governor McMaster issued an executive “Work or Home” Order, in which he asked local governments “to utilize any available technology or other reasonable procedures to conduct such [public] meetings and accommodate public participation via virtual or other remote or alternate means.”

According to the ordinance, board meetings will be held using Zoom Webinars. Members will be “on camera and able to speak freely or as allowed by normal board operating rules.”

Members of the public can access the meetings using computers or mobile devices, or by calling in on the phone.

A computer with a camera and microphone will also be set up in a public building for citizens to use, while practicing proper social distancing.

Public comments can also be submitted in writing during the upbic input period.

The meetings will be streamed on social media platforms such as the City’s YouTube channel.

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