New legislation being introduced today would call for the City Council to offer a feature on its website that would allow the public to comment on proposed legislation and resolutions.
Councilman Ben Kallos, chair of the Committee on Governmental Operations, and Councilman James Vacca, chair of the Committee on Technology, are introducing the bill that seeks to mirror a feature available on the website of the New York State Senate.
"The conversation between lawmakers and those they represent must be a two-way conversation," Kallos said in a statement. "Public feedback is essential for good governance and will help lawmakers craft the best public policy we can."
The legislation would add the requirement to Council rules reform language passed in 2014 regarding the establishment of a legislative tracking database, in addition to also expanding on open data specifications for Council legislative content and the methods by which the data can be made most accessible to third parties.
An upgrade last year of the State Senate's site, already known for its pioneering online government engagement role in the state, optimized it for easy sharing on social media and for soliciting comments. The open-source site was an honoree as part of the 2016 Webby Awards in the government and innovation category.