In an effort to provide access to some of those who were shut out of listening to Board of Supervisors meetings when KCBX stopped broadcasting them in January, the county government has set up an audio stream.
While the new Internet audio streaming of meetings is not a full replacement for a radio broadcast, County Administrator Dan Buckshi said, it does provide residents with the capability to listen to a meeting live, using their smart phones or tablets.
Many people who had listened to Board of Supervisors meetings for decades on KCBX protested loudly when station managers decided they could make more money and serve more people who wanted different programming by changing their format.
Buckshi and the county fought in vain to keep KCBX and have been seeking an alternative. He said he realizes that many of those who listened on the radio might be older and unable to afford or understand the new technology.
At this point, the audio-only option on the Internet site is the best we can do, Buckshi wrote in an email to The Tribune.
After we were notified by KCBX of their intent to drop coverage of the board meetings, we conducted a request for proposals in order to determine if other stations might be interested. Unfortunately no stations had both the interest and ability to broadcast throughout the entire county, he wrote.
He said the stream provides a mechanism that can be effectively used over just about any Internet connection, including those used by cellular carriers. He added that those who use it should contact their cellular company to ensure they do not incur additional cellular charges.
Listeners can find the stream at http://www.slocounty.ca.gov/clerk/BoardofSupervisors/Live_and_archived_meetings_online.htm
The only meeting currently broadcasting the audio-only stream is the Board of Supervisors. Other governmental bodies may join later.