Australia Brisbane City Council bans use of meeting live streams for political advertising, satire

03:06  15 september  2021
03:06  15 september  2021 Source:   abc.net.au

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Council meetings have adjournments for breaks such as afternoon tea, dinner or for another reason moved by a Councillor and approved by the Chamber, for example, to allow for legal advice to be sought. How soon after a Council meeting will the video be available to watch? Six months of audio recordings from meetings prior to the start of streaming will still be available from Brisbane Square Library. I can’t access the stream or archive recording. What should I do? Council uses YouTube to stream meetings .

The public is welcome to attend all Brisbane City Council ordinary meetings and most Standing Committee meetings . For Council meetings , there is seating at the back of the Council chamber in the public gallery. City Hall staff will direct you to the designated visitor seating area. The Council Chamber and Committee rooms can accommodate people with a disability. Find out how to access City Hall or phone Council on 07 3403 8888 to speak to City Hall Operations. Rules of attending ordinary Council meetings . Visitors are bound by the Meetings Local Law 2001 and conditions of entry to the

Adrian Schrinner in a suit standing in front of a window: Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner. (ABC News: Liz Pickering) © Provided by ABC News Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner. (ABC News: Liz Pickering)

Brisbane City Council's LNP administration has banned the use of its live streamed council meetings for political advertising, election campaigning, or satire, in a move criticised by opposition councillors.

On Tuesday the council's LNP administration introduced amendments to the Meetings Local Law.

The law governs how council meetings are conducted.

Under the new law, audio or video of council meetings must "only be used for the purposes of fair and accurate reports of proceedings" and must not be used for "political advertising, election campaigning or any advertising campaign that would normally require at law a broadcaster to announce who has authorised the material".

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Brisbane City Council is responsible for permitting and regulating outdoor advertising signs in Brisbane . Committees, meetings and minutes. Vision and strategy. Living in Brisbane newsletter. Council Annual Plan and Budget. Council has by resolution on 23 March 2021 proposed to make the Advertising Devices Local Law 2021.

LIVE program. Brisbane City Council is responsible for permitting and regulating outdoor advertising devices in Brisbane . The Local Law is supported by statutory instruments that you can use to find out whether a proposed advertising device is permitted, requires approval or is generally

Similar rules oversee the Queensland Parliament's broadcast of Parliament sittings.

The council law prevents meeting recordings from being used for "satire or ridicule, commercial sponsorship or commercial advertising".

The use of any recordings must "be placed in context so as to avoid any misrepresentation".

'Short-sighted' amendments criticised

Opposition leader Jared Cassidy said the amendments were designed to shut down democratic debate and gag Labor councillors.

"The chief legal officer of the council confirmed today that they are so vague as to be open to almost any interpretation about what is 'political advertising,'" Cr Cassidy said.

"There's no definition included in the Meetings Local Law about what that is.

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Advertising devices. Brisbane City Council holds different types of meetings including ordinary, special and budget Council meeting and Standing Committee meetings . Watch and listen to live Council meetings . Ordinary Council meetings are streamed when Council meets on Tuesdays

The main council meeting is still streamed . The smaller committee meetings only started streaming during lockdowns when the councillors were working from home, so it was basically a Zoom meeting and easy to stream . Now they're back to in-person meetings and the rooms aren't setup with cameras or any other infrastructure needed for streaming . It probably wouldn't cost much to setup something low budget for these rooms, but govt being govt they want to go with a full enterprise solution and have quoted a pretty hefty figure to get it set up (can't remember the exact amount).

"Potentially that means any democratically elected councillor is restricted from reporting what happens in this council meeting."

Journalists are permitted to record council meetings for reporting purposes, but no other member of the public is permitted to do so, and the chair of council has the power to revoke media accreditation at any time.

Greens councillor Jonathan Sri, who lobbied for live streaming to be introduced, questioned why the council was following the same model as state Parliament.

"I think it is short-sighted and foolish of this administration to simply copy those [state] rules over without reflecting more carefully on how they'll be enforced and interpreted in this place," Cr Sri said.

He said as media coverage of Brisbane council was limited, councillors often had to promote local issues themselves and used video from council meetings on social media.

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Brisbane City Council is dedicated to a liveable city , creating more leisure options and better facilities and venues for all ages to enjoy. Council libraries provide a wide range of services including book clubs, reading programs, computer training, events and workshops. Visit your local library to join, renew or borrow books, and use the many resources on offer. What's on at our libraries. There are a huge range of activities, live streams , workshops and more on offer. See what's happening at a library near you.

Organisations listed in Appendix A of the Brisbane City Council Schedule of Fees and Charges and not-for-profit educational, child care and sporting organisations (statutory declaration required) are exempt from all fees, provided the device does not contain any third party advertising . Advertising devices placed or held on a Council footway to advocate for a particular cause or issue, not involving the promotion of a particular product, company or organisation, are exempt from fees.

After a briefing from council officers about the proposed changes on Tuesday, Cr Sri said definitions of political advertising and election campaigning were still unclear.

"Among other things, the amendment to the local law suggests that very strong limits will be placed on any sharing of videos from council meetings that could be construed as political advertising," he said.

Urgency motions and notified motions

In a bid to block Labor's tactic of using urgency motions to force debate, the council has also extended the deadline for councillors to submit notified motions to the meeting agenda.

An urgency motion breaks into the council's set business and can be called by any councillor at any time.

The councillor then has three minutes to speak on why a matter is urgent before the council votes on allowing or refusing debate.

A notified motion is submitted to the council ahead of time, included in the council's agenda, and debated at the end of a chamber meeting.

Councillors calling an urgency motion will now also have to justify why the motion was not notified the day before.

'Misuse' of urgency motions

Lord mayor Adrian Schrinner said Labor councillors had moved 58 urgency motions in the past 12 months and were often unprepared to debate the motion if the LNP-majority council voted it through.

Accusing Labor councillors of being "lazy" in using urgency motions, Cr Schrinner says allowing notified motions to be submitted a day before council meetings will remove the apparent need for urgency motions.

"You will no longer be able to misuse urgency motions for your political point-scoring … the jig is up," Cr Schrinner said.

But Independent councillor Nicole Johnston warns LNP councillors that "one day you will be in opposition", at which point the changes will directly affect them.

Councillors will also only be allowed to speak once in general business at the end of a meeting, instead of being allowed to speak on any number of topics they wish.

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This is interesting!