In recent times the four commissioners who are not Mayor assemble along with the Mayor and City Administration to generally rubber stamp what is on the agenda. The last meeting however was an exception. One commissioner of note quietly asked a four word question of the Mayor which was answered and a short discussion ensued..
Two and a half years ago The City of Bloomfield Hills was way ahead of neighboring communities in providing it's citizens with information about the workings of their government. We were among the first communities (a year ahead of Bloomfield Township) to televise City Commission meetings which were then posted and archived on our City's web site.
In fact it was such an achievement that current Mayor Sarah McClure in the last City election boasted of a being a member of the commission that made the televised City Commission meetings a reality . She said it was indicative of increased transparency in Government our City was practicing, Those remarks were made at the League of Women's Candidates Forum last spring and the video was posted on the City's web site which in those days functional quite well..
In 2010 City Clerk Amy Burton took it upon herself to put the minutes and the complete Agenda packet of all City meetings, (City Commission, Planning Commission, and the Zoning Board of Appeal ) and put them on the City's web site when they could easily be searched by a search engine. She started with the year 2002 because that was the first year records were kept on computer which made it manageable for one person to do. It was a remarkable achievement and one that was not equaled for many years.
Last year Bloomfield Township using the resources providerd by a of a population of 40,000,a team of dedicated people, professional assistance and two years of time did the same thing Amy going back to 1827
Prior to 1928 those records are all hand written. Typewritten records started in 1928 t year and lasted until computer s took over by the end of the Century.
The key factor here is not that the township out did us but that after our first impressive start we went no further. We only have to back to 1932 and presumably all our records are typewritten. If one person with a full time job can find time go back eight years. what could a handful of weekend volunteers do ? There are many in our City who are keen on the area's history and might be interested in helping but our City, despite the initial success never pursued the matter.
Today if you visit the Bloomfield Township's web site you will see the below box. on the front page,
Bloomfield Township's Official Website
News & Events
Delinquent Tax Outreach Program
Get a Flu Shot
2012 Year-End Review
Holiday Schedule for 2013
Bloomfield Township Fire Department 2012
Video of Board of Trustee Meetings
Bloomfield Township Receives AAA Bond Rating
Quick LinkQuestions? Suggestions? Ideas? Please contact us!
Click on Video of the Board of Trustees Meetings which is the equivalent of our City Commission and and after a spit second or so delay videos of every meeting from 1/14/2013 going back to when the service was started in at the 6/26/2011. The above link works. You may try it if you like.
We are pleased to report that Our City Clerk has informed us that as early as Friday of this week a similar Video on Demand system will be in place on our City's web site.We believe it will It will include all our old videos of Commission meetings just like our old web site used to.
It seems there was a glitch in the new (as of July 2012) website and our videos of City Commission Meetings were never posted , That was an unintended consequence of switching to the new website
To access the "Video on Demand." icon on our City's website you have to first click on the "Front Desk " button on the home page. Doing so would produce the following.
The only video that has ever appeared as yet on the new website was the one from the October 19th 2012 meeting. The "Video on Demand "did not work and did not produce any newer or older videos.
You may say that is not a major matter and that would be correct except for a couple of things.Anyone who visited our website would realize that October 9th 2012 was a long time ago and wonder why we didn't. Worse every month the the Bloomfield Hill Cable TV cameras roll at commission meetings. The bill for services rendered is paid by the City.The funds are supplied by the tax payers who also pay for the web site. In neither case are the residents getting what they paid for or the case of the missing videos anything at all.
Also as we previously discussed, I am working on the video formats of our city commission meetings in a manner that is easily uploaded and viewed. You are correct that the video meetings were on our old website and the current meeting videos will again be available to view on our new site. My goal is to have this project completed by the end of the week.
Should you have any further questions, I am happy to do my best to respond.
Amy L. Burton, CMC
City of Bloomfield Hills
45 E. Long Lake Road
Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304
The above refers to to our initial correspondence of two weeks prior. What is most curious is that no one seemed to notice the perpetuity of October 9th 2012 on the our web site. In our minds the villains of the piece is not our City Clerk or staff but all the people who should noticed.but didn't which begs the question is anyone paying attention ?
A simple announcement that the City Commission meetings due to technical difficulties could not be posted on the new web site but would in interim would be available on You Tune (No charge to the City) or Vimeo (nominal charge) until further notice would have sufficed. Instead seven months went by, approximately $2000 was paid for the filming, City Commission in TV speak faded to black and the residents were left in the dark.