In a very visible and public display that adds credibility to the City of Celina’s commitment to its tagline, “Life Connected,” the City is making it easier for residents to attend and follow municipal meetings, including the City Council’s monthly meetings, thereby strengthening connections with elected and appointed officials and their decision-making process.
Starting with the City Council meeting of Tuesday, March 10, the Celina City Council will meet in the newly-renovated Council Chambers Building, 112 N. Colorado, site of the former First United Methodist Church, next door to the Celina Police Department headquarters. The Council meets on the second Tuesday of the month starting at 5:00pm.
The new Council Chambers facility becomes the permanent meeting location for the Council after the governing body long met at the Celina ISD’s Board Room for their regular meetings. A brief ceremony will help inaugurate the new Council Chambers facility prior to the March 10 City Council meeting. The ceremony will include an expression of thanks to the Celina ISD for the use of their facility.
In addition, the renovated facility, converted by the contracting firm of Hill and Wilkinson, is also outfitted with electronic equipment including various wall-mounted cameras and individual microphones that serve to provide a video stream via the internet to anyone wishing to follow meetings either in real-time or at a more convenient time via the video archiving of meetings that will be available.
“We’ve been talking for some time about expanding the ability of residents to participate in not just Council meetings, but in as many public meetings as possible,” says City Manager Jason Laumer. “This renovated facility is not only a part of Celina’s long history, it has now been converted to a state of the art facility in every respect, and we believe it will allow our residents to better connect with Council and the various boards that serve Celina.”
Meetings of the various boards and commissions that serve in advisory capacities to the City Council in areas such as Planning and Zoning, and Library Services, among several others will also use the facility to conduct their public meetings. Significantly, the facility has been designed to serve the community for public meetings and special events. For example, if rain threatens Movie Night on the Square, the facility can serve as an alternative venue.
Moreover, the Council Chambers facility will also accommodate numerous City of Celina employees who have been officing in the modular building on the south side of the Police Department headquarters. Employees in Development Services, Engineering, Building Inspections, and other support functions will be moving into the newly-refurbished building over the next few weeks. “The Council Chambers facility has maintained its impressive exterior, and now stands poised to enter its new phase of service to Celina residents. It also sends a very clear message about the City’s unqualified commitment to investing in downtown,” said Laumer.