Daily Herald, Eric Peterson
Despite low viewership, YouTube streaming of Schaumburg's village board meetings could be renewed indefinitely Tuesday.
Trustees will consider a recommendation from their finance. legal and general government committee to make the original six-month trial period permanent and spend $1,060 on new equipment.
"We're disappointed the numbers are low, but the plus side is that people may feel very comfortable with the way we're running things," said Trustee Tom Dailly, who proposed the idea last year.
The intention of the trial period was to determine whether viewership was sufficient to justify the cost of streaming the meetings permanently. By spring, officials were touting the value of greater transparency despite viewership that was lower than hoped.
The average number of live views per meeting the videos have had is 10, while the average number of post views is 70. The greatest amount of interest came for the first streamed meeting Jan. 9, which had 25 live views and 211 post views.
The recommended purchases to make the service permanent include an $800 camera that would stay in the board room and cut down on the cost of being installed and removed every time, Director of Information Technology Peter Schaak said.
Other recommended improvements include $100 for optical indicators to show people in the board room when the cameras are on and off, and a $100 audio control on the board dais that can turn the sound on and off before and after each meeting.
The total staff time to process the videos is estimated at only $60 per year, Schaak said.
If approved Tuesday, the purchases would take about two months to complete and install. Viewers should not notice any change in quality during or after the installation, Schaak added.
Dailly said that if the costs were as high as $10,000 the board might have a lot more to think about and discuss, but he found the cost reasonable.
The camera is expected to need replacement every three to five years, while the optical indicators and audio control probably won't need to be replaced for five to seven years, Schaak said.