After more than a year of online meetings, the Saint Paul City Council is preparing for a return to in-person meetings at City Hall after Labor Day, September 6.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the council, Saint Paul Planning Commission and other city boards, committees and commissions to move online in March 2020. While other governmental bodies have allowed public testimony through call-in or online platforms, the City Council has for the most part taken public testimony via email, regular mail and phone.

The City Council has been live-streaming its meetings for several years and posting the recordings online. This summer, the council will look at ways to continue some level of online participation. A hybrid of in-person and online meetings is a possibility.

According to Ward 4 council member Mitra Jalali, online hearings have helped the council to broaden its outreach in the past year.

— Jane McClure



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