Council meetings to remain virtual for remainder of the year

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BRIELLE — Mayor Thomas Nicol announced Monday night that borough council meetings will remain virtual through December, a decision challenged during the online session by Brielle resident Virginia Loftin.

“I don’t understand why they can’t be held in-person,” Ms. Loftin told the council. “In-person meetings are being held in the school… in the library. I don’t understand why we can’t go back to in-person meetings so that people can attend.” 

Brielle has been hosting its council meetings virtually since the pandemic began. The administration uses the conference call website GoToMeeting.com, and a link to the conference appears on every agenda. In addition to the conference website, residents can dial in on their phones by calling 1-877-568-4106 [toll free] or 1-646-749-3129. Participants can speak during the public comments section when attending virtually. 

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“We’re going to stay virtual for the remainder of this year,” Mayor Nicol told Ms. Loftin. “We have a small area, and we don’t want to subject anybody to the virus.” 

Another participant, Taylor Latourette, suggested that Brielle hold its council meetings in the same space as the Board of Education meetings, which is inside Brielle Elementary School. The mayor responded by saying that there’s an insurance issue with changing the location, but promised to look into it. 

“We all think it [in-person meetings] would be wonderful,” the mayor said. “But, as I said, we’re going to air on the side of caution… for the welfare and benefit of the citizens of Brielle.”

The next council meeting will take place on Monday, Nov. 22. 

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