City Commission holds first virtual meeting in its history due to coronavirus

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Mayor Nan Whaley says for the first time in Dayton’s history, city commissioners held their meeting virtually on Wednesday to practice social distancing and comply with Governor Mike DeWine’s order.

With the mayor, city manager, and commissioners all dialed in from separate locations, they conducted the meeting remotely.

The mayor says they chose to still hold the meeting to get essential business done, including accepting grants that were awarded to the city.

“As you saw on the calendar, there were lots of acceptance for FEMA grants and the stuff that we need to do to keep the community running had to be done,” says Mayor Whaley.

Friday they worked through logistics to make sure everything ran smoothly Wednesday.

The mayor says while she looks forward to getting back to in-person meetings, technology has given them the ability to stay safe while also performing crucial work.

“If you think about 20 years ago, this wouldn’t be able to be done. I mean, I remember when I started on City Commission in 2006. We still got all of our packets and they were like this big of paperwork delivered to us,” gestures Mayor Whaley. “Or we pick them up here at City Hall every Friday. Now that’s in our email box. Everything is done pretty much virtually.”

During the virtual meeting, there were no public comments, but the meeting was streamed online.

Leaders offered words of encouragement.

“We know it’s tough. We’re doing our best to hold things together,” offered City Commissioner Matt Joseph. “When we come back we’ll be stronger than ever.”

“We are disaster-tested, right? So we’ll get through this too. I’m really proud of the community how they’re really paying attention about staying home and knowing that they’re saving lives every day when they do that,” says Mayor Whaley.

The April 15 City Commission meeting has been canceled. The mayor says they’re doing meetings as needed. If they hold any more meetings while the governor’s order is still in effect, they will be virtual again.

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