CHESHIRE — In the 21st century, municipalities have been forced to adapt with changes in technology, allowing for meetings to be broadcast online, via social media and local access television channels.
The Public Educational and Governmental Programming and Education Technology Investment Account grant program has been vital in securing the necessary funding to allow for previous advancements. Now the town is applying for the grant a second time.
“The Town actually received this grant back in 2013, where we have been able to broadcast our Council meetings on the local access channel and through our YouTube page,” said Arnett Talbot, assistant town manager. “Unfortunately now, that equipment is outdated. We want to extend our broadcasting capabilities to Room 207, which is where we hold our budget workshop meetings and a number of others. While those meetings aren’t widely attended, we believe that the information given at those meetings is really important to the community and we want to be able to broadcast that.”
In 2013, the town received a $144,095 grant that expanded the availability of the government access channel to the entire community, including more public meetings. Currently, Room 207 at Town Hall is ill-equipped for broadcasting, including insufficient electrical outlets for equipment. A second grant would help with those obstacles.
According to the application, the town is asking for $78,211 to update the broadcasting equipment and other improvements.
“Additionally, there is the newly-formed School Modernization Committee which will also have access to Room 207. The Committee (is) addressing the education of Cheshire’s children and considering capital expenditures in the tens of millions of dollars. The Town feels it is vital to provide remote electronic access to these meetings for the parents and taxpayers of our community,” the application reads.
For more information about the PEGPETIA grant application, email Gail Lucchina at firstname.lastname@example.org.