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LWVAC Observer Corps. What is the Observer Corps? Why are we doing this? How do I get involved? What do I do as an observer?. What Is The Observer Corps? Why Are We Doing This?. LWV is an active champion of openness in government

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lwvac observer corps
LWVAC Observer Corps
  • What is the Observer Corps?
  • Why are we doing this?
  • How do I get involved?
  • What do I do as an observer?

LWVAC Observer Corps

what is the observer corps why are we doing this
What Is The Observer Corps?Why Are We Doing This?

LWV is an active champion of openness in government

Public access to information is only as good as we, the people, demand that it be

An Observer Corps is a structured way for individuals to exercise their right to know

Observers keep elected and appointed officials on notice; they let them know that someone is watching what decisions are being made and how they are being made.

LWVAC Observer Corps

What Is The Observer Corps?Why Are We Doing This? - 2
  • Observer programs are NOT vehicles to work personal or partisan agendas
  • Unless serving as a designated spokesperson the observers should not provide commentary or testimony on issues

LWVAC Observer Corps

what do you need to be an observer
What do you need to be an Observer?

Be a good listener, able to summarize and ‘interpret’ proceedings in a fair way

Interest in local government and/or the issues being discussed

Able to serve as an ‘ambassador’ for the organization (e.g. talking to other attendees about the organization)

Discrete and courteous

Not working a personal or partisan agenda

LWVAC Observer Corps

what areas will we focus on
What Areas Will We Focus On?
  • Albany County has 3 cities, 9 towns, and 5 incorporated towns plus a number of special districts; our initial focus will be on
    • County Government,
    • Albany City,
    • Bethlehem,
    • Colonie
    • Guilderland
  • If you live in a different town or city and would like to Observe your local government that is great

LWVAC Observer Corps

what areas will we focus on1
What Areas Will We Focus On?
  • There are lots of committees and subcommittees so our focus will be on topics that are of specific interest to the Albany league and our members:
    • Nursing Home & Health Care
    • SWAMP, Albany landfill and the environment
    • Mass Transit
    • Hydrofracking
    • Albany Housing Authority
    • Consolidation of services/government entities
    • Redistricting

We will keep an ear to the ground for special committees and issues as they arise

LWVAC Observer Corps

ok i ll do it what does that mean
OK I’ll Do It, What Does That Mean?
  • Pick a governmental entity and/or a topic that are of interest to you
  • or, if you are willing to go to an occasional meeting when someone else can’t make it let us know that
  • We’ll help you find where the appropriate meeting notices are so you can plan to attend
  • Individual observers will keep track of their meetings and know when and where they are
  • If there is a meeting but you can’t attend we hope to have a list of willing alternates
  • When you attend a meeting wear a LWV button
  • Arrive a little early and introduce yourself to the presiding officials, tell them about your role
  • Make sure they understand that you are there to watch the proceedings and understand what is happening, you are not there because something is wrong

LWVAC Observer Corps

what else do i need to do
What Else Do I Need to Do?
  • Part of the value of the Observer Corps is sharing what you learn with other members of the League
  • We will have a regular feature in the monthly Bulletin on Observer Corps activities
  • You may want to write a column for the Bulletin on a particular topic or meeting
  • In the future there will be forms on the web-site that you can print out and take with you, hopefully you will then be able to complete them on line and send them to the Bulletin editor

LWVAC Observer Corps