City’s public meetings site could get overhaul over the next year

Long Beach’s website that archives public meeting agendas, which includes links to those meetings, will undergo an overhaul after the City Council voted Tuesday to authorize the City Manager’s office to contract a new vendor to redesign the site.

The city currently uses Granicus, a company that provides similar services to over 5,500 government entities in the United States and internationally. The city has used Granicus for the past 17 years but the City Clerk’s office has requested the site get modernized.

A contract with Prime Government Solutions that could cost the city about $70,000 annually could be completed in the coming weeks. Prime Government Solutions’ client list includes Las Vegas, Los Angeles and the County of Orange.

Pablo Rubio, an analyst with the City Clerk’s office, said that the switch, which won’t go live until October 2022, will make the user experience better for both the clerk’s office and the public.

A screenshot of the city of Los Angeles website that was created by Prime Government Solutions.

The change will allow council members to use an automated feature to upload agenda items rather than send them to the City Clerk’s office, and the site should have a more efficient search function, Rubio said. It could also allow council members to vote digitally when meeting remotely.

One of the bigger changes is the new HTML format for the agendas, which will allow users to translate meeting agendas into any language available through Google Translate. The city currently requires advanced notice for translated agendas to be provided.

“It’s not perfect but it’s definitely a start,” Rubio said of the new translation feature.

Rubio said Long Beach’s contract is piggybacking off the city of Los Angeles contract that still has two years remaining on it, and which LA is expected to renew. The change will cost the city nearly $150,000 in start-up costs, which includes migrating files over to the new system The annual subscription feee is $69,830.

He said that the Los Angeles website could provide an idea of what the new Long Beach site could look like.

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Jason Ruiz covers City Hall and politics for the Long Beach Post.