City to end remote participation for most commissions, all committees, on March 1

A 2021 "hybrid" Piedmont City Council meeting

From a City of Piedmont press release on Feb. 14:

Starting March 1, 2023, the City of Piedmont will discontinue remote participation for most Commission and all Committee meetings. Community members will still be able to comment remotely via Zoom for City Council and Planning Commission meetings. Park Commission and Recreation Commission meetings will continue to be broadcast live on KCOM and streamed on the City website.

This format change was prompted by changes to State regulations governing public meetings, which had been relaxed at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic to support remote participate for members of legislative bodies. Governor Newsom has announced his intention to rescind the COVID-19 State of Emergency at the end of February 2023, at which point members of City Councils, Boards, Commissions, and Committees statewide will be required to attend meetings in person, with limited exceptions.

At their January 17, 2023, the City Council was briefed on changes to teleconference regulations and was asked to give direction to staff on whether to continue providing remote participation options for community members at Council, Commission, and Committee meetings.

After a detailed discussion, the Council chose to continue offering remote public comment for City Council and Planning Commission meetings only, due to low remote participation for other bodies and the strain on staff resources required to support hybrid meetings. Each remote or hybrid meeting requires an additional staff member, working overtime, to manage the logistics and operations of the virtual meeting.

More information is available in the agenda report, minutes, and meeting video for the Jan. 17 City Council meeting.

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