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A. Upon the adoption of this section by a city board, commission or committee, any member of the city board commission or committee may attend any open or closed meeting of the board, commission or committee via electronic means (such as by telephone, video or internet connection) provided that a quorum of the board, commission or committee is physically present throughout such meeting and such attendance is in compliance with the provisions of this section and any applicable laws. For the purpose of clarification, this section shall apply to all city boards, commissions and committees provided for in Title 3 of the Elgin Municipal Code, 1976, as amended, and to the Elgin Local Liquor Control Commission provided for in Chapter 6.06 of the Elgin Municipal Code, 1976, as amended.
B. A member of the city board, commission or committee may attend a meeting electronically if the member meets the following conditions:
1. The member shall notify the recording secretary at least twenty-four (24) hours before the meeting, unless impractical, so that necessary communications equipment can be arranged. Inability to make the necessary technical arrangements will result in denial of a request for remote attendance.
2. The member must assert one of the following three reasons why he or she is unable to physically attend the meeting,
a. The member cannot attend because of personal illness or disability; or
b. The member cannot attend because of employment purposes or the business of the city; or
c. The member cannot attend because of a family or other emergency.
C. The recording secretary, after receiving the electronic attendance request, shall inform the city board, commission or committee of the request for electronic attendance.
D. After a roll call establishing that there is a quorum physically present at a meeting where a member of the city board, commission or committee desires to attend electronically, the presiding officer shall state that (i) a notice was received by a member of the city, board, commission or committee in accordance with this section, including the reason for the member's absence, and (ii) the member will be deemed authorized to attend the meeting electronically unless a motion objecting to the member's electronic attendance is made, seconded, and approved by two-thirds of the members of the city board, commission or committee physically present at the meeting. If no such motion is made and seconded or if any such motion fails to achieve the required vote by the members of the city board, commission or committee physically present at the meeting, then the request by the member to attend the meeting electronically shall be deemed approved by the city board, commission or committee and the presiding officer shall declare the requesting member present. After such declaration by the presiding officer, the question of a member's electronic attendance may not be reconsidered.
E. The member participating electronically and other members of the city board, commission or committee must be able to communicate effectively, and members of the audience must be able to hear all communications at the meeting site. Before allowing electronic attendance at any meeting, adequate equipment shall be provided to accomplish this objective at the meeting site.
F. Any member attending electronically shall be considered an off-site attendee and counted as present electronically for that meeting if the member is allowed to attend. The meeting minutes shall also reflect and state specifically whether each member is physically present or present by electronic means.
G. A member permitted to attend electronically will be able to express his or her comments during the meeting and participate in the same capacity as those members physically present, subject to all general meeting guidelines and procedures previously adopted and adhered to. The member attending electronically shall be heard, considered, and counted as to any vote taken. Accordingly, the name of any member attending electronically shall be called during any vote taken, and his or her vote counted and recorded by the recording secretary and placed in the minutes for the corresponding meeting. A member attending electronically may leave a meeting and return as in the case of any member, provided the member attending electronically shall announce his or her leaving and returning.
H. No more than two (2) members may attend a city board, commission or committee meeting by electronic means. (Ord. G21-20, 2020)