The city has launched a new online forum aimed at encouraging resident participation in discussions over land use, finances and other local issues.
It’s called Open Novato and is the latest in the city’s ongoing efforts to have more transparency in its day-to-day operations.
“We recognize that lives are busy and many can’t make Council, Planning Commission and other meetings,” said Peggy Flynn, the city’s spokeswoman. “Open Novato allows us to meet people where they are… and solicit feedback and ideas on citywide topics.”
Other efforts to establish better communications between City Hall and residents include the upcoming meetings to solicit feedback on the North Redwood Corridor project, scheduled for Sept. 14 and Sept. 28 and the online budget accountability tool, that allows residents to remove or add various programs in an effort to balance the budget.
Marin County and the city of Sausalito have similar programs, operated by Peak Democracy, a Berkeley-based company. The company creates a platform where city officials can sift through the comments and collect demographic information about who’s commenting. Peak Democracy does not share the collected data with any outside third party.