There are many reasons to vote no on Measure N, but one of the strangest and least known proposals within it is section 12.01.09.
Section 12.01.09 - Digital Communication Devices.
“Digital communication device” encompasses smartphones, laptop and tablet computers and other similar hardware capable of sending and receiving electronic messages or accessing the Internet. Here's the wording:
A member of a legislative body may, during a meeting governed by the Brown Act or this Chapter, use a digital communication device only if it has been provided by the City to assist members in their official work and linked to a display screen mounted behind the member in the meeting room, allowing citizens present to observe how the member is using his or her device and to read whatever messages are being sent or received by that member during the meeting. Information sent, received or stored on such devices is subject to the applicable records retention statute in the Government Code and to the disclosure requirements of the California Public Records Act and this Chapter.
Sorry council member, you can't use your own smartphone during the meeting, however, the City will give you an iPad and have the contents displayed on a video screen mounted behind you. REALLY?!
Please, proponents of Measure N, what threat to democracy is being halted by banning a council member from checking his/her smartphone? Are you worried that a text will come in from the "shadow government" of Dixon telling the member how to vote? Help me to understand.
Who will pay for these monitors? How big will they need to be so people in the back row of the chamber can see what Google search a certain council member is making? Does any other city in America--no the world--do this?
Want to say something about this story or Measure N in general? Leave a comment below or post a blog directly to Dixon Patch. Just click this link and you're ready to publish! Email me at email@example.com if you have questions.