Meeting Public Comments

Subcommittee meeting and times are as follows:
A bill for an act relating to electronic meetings of governmental bodies.
Subcommittee members: Nordman-CH, Gobble, Staed
Date: Tuesday, February 15, 2022
Time: 8:15 AM - 8:30 AM
Location: House Lounge 2
Names and comments are public records. Remaining information is considered a confidential record.
Comments Submitted:

Margaret Buckton [Urban Education Network and Rural School Advocates of Iowa]
Both the UEN and RSAI support HSB 663 which would allow school boards to have electronic meetings that meet the open meetings law requirements. We've learned during the pandemic that electronic meetings can increase access for the public; to better understand the school board's agenda and actions, and how their board members voted on policies that impact students, taxpayers and staff. We do agree that meetings, even if electronic, must still be public, with a place that the public can access the meeting, the public notice requirements are met in advance, there are minutes taken and other provision of public meetings are followed. School boards and other governmental bodies that have public meetings need to make the access to the meeting easy to find so the public can participate.The possibility of electronic meetings, when determined locally to be the best process, provides both for public access and for board member access. This practice would allow board members who may have to travel for work or need health or physical accomodation to more easily fulfill their duty in participating in board meetings. This can increase diversity on the school board and help more individuals consider running for the board. Thanks for considering this bill. We encourage you to move it forward.