DAYS after the state government paved the way for councils to meet online to comply with social distancing guidelines, Orange City Council has already practised.
With public gatherings now reduced to two people, councillors will meet on Tuesday using a program called Zoom, rather than gather in the council chambers.
They held a trial run earlier this week and chief executive officer David Waddell said they adapted quickly, despite some expressing a preference for in-person meetings.
"We're not going to hold a meeting in close proximity," he said.
"On the screen, it looks like the Brady Bunch with 12 talking heads."
He said the way meetings were run might change a little, with mayor Reg Kidd likely to invite each councillor to make a comment in turn.
We can't get public access through Zoom.Orange City Council chief executive officer David Waddell
The system also has a voting system, but the drawback is members of the public will not be able to watch the meeting live.
Instead, the meeting will be recorded and posted online for people to watch at the conclusion, most likely on the council's website.
Mr Waddell said at this stage, it was the best solution possible.
"To the best of our knowledge, we can't get public access through Zoom," he said.
"We are looking at options, but for now, we want to get through the next meeting."
Mr Waddell said it was essential councillors continue to meet and the online option allowed that to happen.
"There are certain things where we need them to vote - it keeps business going," he said.
The move is also set to be a challenge for Cabonne Council - while Orange council began live-streaming its meetings two years ago, Cabonne started filming meetings in December, uploading the footage at the conclusion.
But technical difficulties have so far delayed the footage from the March meeting being posted online.
Both councils spread out their pubic galleries last month.
Orange council is due to discuss a number of topics on Tuesday in what is expected to be a shorter meeting - COVID-19 will be a recurring theme as they deal with the question of rates and potential assistance for Regional Express and Fly Corporate.
The April 21 meeting agenda is expected to be larger with councillors to place the 2020-21 budget on public exhibition.
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