Thursday, October 22, 2015

Double Council Meeting Next Time

The next City Council meeting is a double-header on Nov. 9, an agenda-fixing session immediately followed by a regular meeting.

Ordinarily the regular meeting would take place a week later, but for the past couple of years the double meeting has taken place so city officials can attend the annual League of Municipalities Conference in Atlantic City.

The conference had a reputation as party central several years ago. In his 2007 book, "The Confession," former Governor James McGreevey used the term "meat market" to describe the conference. But from what one hears, the focus now is more on professionalism and saving taxpayers dollars by limiting the number of staffers who can attend and by not staying over in fancy hotels.

The 2015 conference coincides with the 100th anniversary of the League of Municipalities, but though venerable, the League is far from old-fashioned. Conference workshops include topics such as social media, sustainability, the Affordable Care Act, mobile apps and electronic bidding.

Municipal officials and employees can also keep up their credentials by earning CEUs (continuing education units) in their fields at the conference. The League is also a year-round asset for municipalities, with information on new legislation and many other aspects of managing a city or town.

So even though a double meeting will be a test of citizens' endurance on those hard benches in Municipal Court, we can take heart in knowing that our municipal staffers will soon be behaving themselves and improving their skills in Atlantic City!


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