As a reporter that covers council meetings, I often here the age-old adage that the public has zero influence over government.
That may seem like the truth in the overall scheme of politics, but locally, the public needs to know that attending your municipal council meetings does have a direct impact on decisions made where you live.
Now, I know most Council Meetings in Uxbridge take place on Monday mornings and most of us have to work then. But, if you ever get the chance to go, I strongly recommend it.
You can grab an agenda of the Council Meeting on Friday Afternoon by either going to your local Township’s website or by visiting the local Municipal office. These are available for free to the public.
Not only do you get to hear what is going on in town and oversee the decisions made by council, but you can even participate.
Let’s use Uxbridge as an example since those are the council meetings I cover. During Committee meetings, there is an opportunity at the end of each committee meeting for the press and the public to voice their questions or concerns.
This is a perfect time for the public to get on the mic and either ask council questions regarding any of the topics discussed or voice any opinions, comments, or concerns to council about what they just spoke about or decided on. Now, you may not directly be able to change something right then and there, but believe me, the Councillors do hear you and really do want to represent the public when making decisions. What you say at that meeting may influence what happens at a later meeting. People do have sway.
Furthermore, because you are aware of the local issues being discussed and decided on by council, you can either voice your concerns to local media or spread the word yourself around town about an issue going on in council.
A letter of opposition can then be written about the issue at hand which has a great impact in the next council meeting. If Council is deciding on what to do with a local issue and they see enough letters supporting it or opposing the motion then they take these letters into consideration. After all, council is supposed to represent the position of the local residents.
We reserve the right to remove any and all comments for any reason. Comments with swearing will be deleted without exception.