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Huntington to start live meeting broadcasts and streaming

Live, from Huntington, it’s the town meetings!

The Huntington Town Board has voted to start live broadcasts of its meetings as well as those of the town Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals. The meetings will be shown live on the town’s government access television channels and live streamed on the town website.

Anyone with an internet connection will be able to watch the meetings in real time on desktop computers, laptops, tablets or smartphones, as well as on Optimum Channel 18 or FiOS Channel 38, town officials said.

Town board member Joan Cergol, sponsor of the resolution that was approved 5-0 Tuesday, said broadcasting meetings brings government closer to the people at no additional cost to taxpayers.

“This is kicking up a notch the town’s transparency,” Cergol said. “We have the ability to do it, there has been requests by our residents to do it, it’s good government.”

Robert Rockelein, secretary for the civic group Huntington Matters, said the decision means more transparency and insight into the legislative process in a cost-effective way.

“It invites more public awareness on the issues and concerns, greater community participation and will get people involved civically,” Rockelein said. “It’s also good for seniors and the handicapped who don’t want to come out on a cold or wet day or night and still keep their ear to the ground.”

Town Supervisor Chad Lupinacci, co-sponsor of the resolution, touted the plan as an example of improved convenience of dealing with town hall, an idea he promoted in his campaign for supervisor last fall.

“It will also drive more residents to our website, offering increased opportunities to learn about town services,” Lupinacci said.

Town Board, Planning Board and Zoning Board meetings have been recorded and rebroadcast on town public access channels for several years. Town officials said the live broadcasts could begin as soon as next month.

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