Forsyth commissioner proposes putting aside electronics in meetings

  • Mark Woolsey
  • for the AJC
5:31 p.m Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017 Local
Forsyth County commissioner Laura Semanson is proposing two changes in how commissioners conduct meetings-including putting phones away.

Forsyth County commissioners discussed the possibility of going electronics-free during meetings at their most recent work session.

Commissioner Laura Semanson suggested during a Nov. 28 meeting. that board members consider surrendering their cell phones and other electronic gear so as to eliminate distractions and appear more professional. She added that some sort of “hotline” provision could be made to make sure a commissioner gets notified of any emergency.

Semanson also suggested that commissioners’ microphones be on or “hot” at all times during meetings to curb side discussions between commissioners and to appear more transparent and attentive to business and to public speakers. The mikes can be switched off currently.

Commissioner chair Todd Levent suggested a “gentleman’s agreement” be put in place to cut side talk. Semanson suggested that the ideas be considered more formally in January, when the new commission weighs revising its rules.