Video Recordings of County Commissioner Meetings

Open, transparent government should be something that we the people and them, meaning our elected or appointed officials, work towards. Although we often see issues polarized to the left or the right, ensuring our government works for us knows no political or ideological side. One of the ways our county commissioners have done this in the last few years is to have video feed of their weekly meetings. Lately, the value of this video has come into question. We have heard that it cost too much money and that the main people watching it are our county employees on county time. While we will admit that the latter fact does raise some issues, we are also concerned that the county might also be too hasty in taking away a valuable service for us the people. We believe that the cameras have provided valuable insight and much needed transparency. Sure audio recordings will allow people to still hear the meetings; however, we loose something of the communication when we can not see the facial expressions and body language of the commissioners. If money is an issue, why doesn’t the county look at other cost cutting measures associated with the cost of the video cameras?  We have a community college that has students that are studying to work in computer and other related digital fields. Have we asked these students if they would like to earn their cooperative work experience credits by running these video feeds for the county? Additionally, we have recently been informed that students at Roseburg High School have the option to take video classes. Why don’t we ask these students if they would be interested in helping with the video feed? Have we have asked the community at large if they would like to volunteer to help the county run the cameras? Before we turn the cameras off and cut off this resource, we should take a long, hard look at what we are really loosing and work towards solutions that allow us to keep the cameras on during these hard economic times.    





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