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Town staff unveiled new meeting management software at Tuesday’s La Plata Town Council work session that they say will manage meeting documents more efficiently and make them more accessible to the public.
The software, called CivicWeb, will provide agendas, minutes and other meeting documents in one place. The management software will link to the town’s website, www.townoflaplata.org.
Currently, town council agendas, minutes and legislation pieces are in separate sections, accessible by going back and forth between links on the town website.
The software is expected to be ready for the Oct. 23 town council business meeting, town clerk Danielle Mandley said.
One of the positives of the new system, Mandley said, is that it will streamline management of town documents.
“It will create efficiencies for staff to manage documents coming from town meetings,” Mandley said.
In a follow-up email, Mandley wrote that the change is also meant to “increase transparency and make the documents associated with agenda items readily available to the public” and automatically track items staff needs to act upon.
The software costs $2,700 per year, Mandley wrote.
The town council agreed to buy the new software at its July 17 work session.
All town boards and commissions will use the CivicWeb software, Mandley said.
The new software also creates a new form for residents and other interested parties to comment.
The form requires a name, address, whether the person is a town resident or business owner and the type of inquiry, such as question, request for service, complaint, suggestion, concern, comment or compliment.
“The last one we don’t expect to have too much of, but we’ll try it,” Mandley said.
Mandley wrote in a follow-up email that it has not been decided where the input form will be made available.
The “Action Tracker” feature will allow town staff to keep track of requests made during town meetings so town staff can follow up on an issue in a timely manner, Mandley said.
She and Michelle Miner, assistant town manager, will receive emails for each action requested at a meeting, and emails to respond to the issue will go to appropriate staff members, Mandley said.
“If the council had a consensus to do something, could you put that in the form? Also, could council members see pending actions that are put into the system?” Mayor Roy Hale asked.
Mandley said the software can create a list of outstanding and completed items. Public Information Act requests, which allow 30 days for public entities to respond, also can be noted on the form.