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Charlotte Area

City Council Citizen Forums Could Soon Return To TV


Charlotte City Council members are expected to decide Monday evening whether to resume televising public forums held before the council’s twice-a-month business meetings. The forums allow Charlotte residents to stand briefly before council members and speak their minds on any topic they choose.

Traditionally, the citizen forums were televised and streamed on the local Government Channel. But in late 2016 and again early last year, things got chaotic a couple of times inside the council chambers as protesters spoke out on police shootings and immigration issues. The city responded last spring by moving the public forums to a smaller room, and halting the video coverage. 

The forums returned to council chambers last October, but still weren’t televised. Earlier this month, the council briefly debated a request by recently-elected at-large member Braxton Winston to bring back the broadcasts. And, for the second time since joining the council in December, Winston live-streamed the public comments himself from the meeting room.

Council members will again consider whether to resume televising the public forums during a 5:00 p.m. Monday work session, prior to the scheduled 6:30 p.m. forum and business meeting. Council has also discussed whether to officially stream the citizen comment periods on social media. No decision on that is expected tonight.