Transparency News, 10/12/21


October 12, 2021
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state & local news stories

The Chesapeake School Board updated the district's COVID-19 mitigation strategies Monday. The decision came after a momentary disruption in the meeting in which a woman, identified as a House of Delegates candidate, was escorted out of the meeting during public comment for what the school board chair called a "personal attack."Chesapeake resident Melanie Cornelisse was asked to leave by board members and security shortly into her speech after she started speaking about school board Chairwoman Victoria Proffitt being under investigation for her collection of unemployment benefits while serving on the board. As she was talking, a member of the board called a point of order, but Cornelisse continued talking. Cornelisse is also running for House of Delegates District 78. Proffitt is also running for Chesapeake Commissioner of the Revenue.

Tuesday night's Board of Supervisors meeting will make county history not as much for its agenda as for its presentation. It will be the first board meeting to be livestreamed and then archived on the Prince George website for historical record. The county recently signed a deal with Swagit Productions LLC that will allow supervisors' meetings to be watched online as they happen in the board meeting room. These meetings can be viewed on both desktop and mobile devices, and the recordings will be indexed so that you can go to a specific portion of the meeting to watch and listen without having to view the entire feed. The county had been using Zoom to broadcast meetings and allow citizens who could not attend in person to comment during the meetings. Prince George said the Zoom link will still be available alongside the livestream.
The Progress-Index

editorials & opinion

I can’t remember the last time I praised a local school board. But the folks who serve on Franklin County’s have done something remarkable and smart that merits applause. Recently, they’ve dropped the hammer on politicians campaigning at school board meetings. As a political newcomer, Williams isn’t taking his election for granted. Although he has no children in Franklin County schools, he’s been showing up at its school board meetings and giving speeches during the “public comment” section. He’s not the only politician, either. By the time September’s meeting came along, Williams was present again. On that occasion, he voiced outrage about the board’s newly enforced policy of not letting politicians speak during the comment period. 
Dan Casey, The Roanoke Times