Posted by on November 25, 2020 6:04 am

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Categories: Coal Region Newswire Coal Region Newswire 2 Local News

schuylkill county commissioners zoom calls

This is an open suggestion for Schuylkill County Commissioners to address their Zoom woes.

If you’ve ever tuned in to a virtual meeting of Schuylkill County Commissioners, you know it’s next to impossible to hear what’s happening half the time. They use Zoom for their virtual meetings during the pandemic.

And while it’s convenient to have this available to the public, the execution of the county’s weekly Zoom meeting needs some improvement.

But we’ve got a really simple fix to the big problem: the sound (or lack of it).

Best guess is that everyone participating in the Courthouse board room is talking to one central microphone. So, people closer to that mic can be heard pretty clearly. But the Commissioners are almost inaudible at times.

A few weeks ago, the County said that it had a few people work on some of the technical issues they had with the Zoom platform and the sound but in reality, nothing really changed.

So, let’s fix this.

Rather than talking to that central mic in the room, Commissioners and other participants should either log in to the Zoom meeting app as a participant or call in with their phones and be a meeting participant.

If they’re worried about someone getting a hold of their phone number, use the Courthouse phone lines we’re paying for or go buy some burner phones and just use them for these Zoom calls. Commissioners and others could also log in to the Zoom call using a tablet or laptop and still accomplish the same goal.

The Commissioners are in to taking cues from other counties on some issues. They allegedly got inspiration from Berks County for the controversial new rules on public comments at these meetings.

Of course, they didn’t take any cues from Carbon County on how to manage CARES Act money, but this is a lot easier and can be done in time for the meeting on Wednesday.

Speaking of that meeting, here’s the Agenda for the Nov. 25 caucus:

11-25-20 Comm Agenda

Of note, it appears the County will be discussing real estate taxes for 2021. And it also appears the County has found a permanent replacement for the Human Resources director’s job to replace the third-party agency we’d been using since September at a cost of $125 per hour.

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