KENNEBUNK – Currently, Kennebunk includes the select board and planning board among meetings that are video recorded. A site plan review board meeting was scheduled for viewing Jan. 19 at town hall streams, and meetings of the new Charter Commission were scheduled with video availability in mind. A 10 a.m. Charter Commission public meeting on Saturday, Jan. 21, is set to be televised, and those with computer access can join in through the Zoom platform, which can be accessed at

Recently, the select board began a conversation about what additional meetings could be provided for public viewing – whether they are merely recorded for later playback on a computer or viewing on cable television – or are a hybrid meeting where people can participate live, online, and rebroadcast later.

“It’s always been my belief we should be broadcasting essentially public meetings – any (municipal) business should be easily accessible to the public to watch,” said board member Miriam Whitehouse, who introduced the subject.

Kennebunk has been video recording select and planning board meetings for years. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, they adapted to the online Zoom platform and now operate a hybrid system.

But it is a complicated one that needs the services of the contracted technician to operate the system, plus another person in the meeting room – most recently Interim Town Manager Bryan Laverriere – to help with the online function.

Board member Leslie Trentalange was unable to attend the meeting but sent an email that questioned if there was a simpler way to accomplish videotaping meetings.


“Going to another solution is not as simple as it seems,” said Shiloh Schulte, select board chair. “It is a good goal to have meetings broadcast as widely as possible,” he added, but noted there would be equipment costs and technical aspects of doing so.

Board member Bill Ward described the current operation as one that is a “not just an old system, but a series of very glued together systems trying to function,” though it does work. “We really do need the technician,” he said.

Board member Lisa Pratt said it might be difficult to video all committee meetings “ultimately that is the function of the minutes,” she said, but wondered if an audio recording might work.

Whitehouse said the conversation was “just what I was hoping for,” and suggested creating a plan and budget.  She suggested the town start with videoing select board workshops and consider committee meetings later. She volunteered to approach RSU 21 to have a look at how its system works.

Laverriere said the most difficult challenge would be providing the hybrid meetings live for participation.

“Maybe we could record the workshops and put them on the website,” said board member Kortney Nedeau.

In the end, the board agreed that Laverriere would put together a plan and present it to the board.

In Kennebunkport, select, planning and budget board meetings, growth planning committee, conservation commission and an advisory board are meetings offered with a video participation aspect. Town Manager Laurie Smith said Kennebunkport selectmen do not have separate workshops – they are conducted as part of the regular meeting. Videos are available live and later on town hall streams, the town’s YouTube channel called Kennebunkport Television and rebroadcast on cable channels along with other programming, like  presentations from Graves Memorial Library.

In Arundel, select and planning board meetings are videotaped and are available for viewing at the town website.

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