During a general election year, the voting process is on people’s minds, but not just at the federal level.
Much of the work of Australia’s democracy takes place outside the national spotlight, in bodies such as the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV), the equivalent of the Local Government Associations (LGAs) in other states.
Lumi has been working with the MAV for many years, helping them to bring their meetings into the 21st century by making the voting and Q&A sessions of meetings easier to run, as well as making them more democratic by giving everyone the same opportunity to speak and making it easier for the Chair to control the meeting.
The MAV holds a State Council meeting twice a year. These are complex events, where councillors from 79 councils debate and vote on anywhere between 50 and 100 motions at a time. Historically, these votes were decided by a show of hands, which took up a huge amount of time and was not always accurate, particularly because some votes were weighted, with some councils having two votes while others had only one.
If the vote was close, there would often be multiple recounts – and even then, there was not always full confidence in the results. Meetings would drag on all day, sometimes running over into a second day.
The introduction of Lumi’s connector keypad system and Viewpoint software meant that the MAV was able to slash the amount of time it took for people to vote down to a matter of seconds. Our technology also hugely increased councillors’ faith in the vote results because the outcome could be instantly verified and audited, if required, in the case of close votes, members were able to see on screen who had voted for and against particular motions. Voting weights were instantly applied, the result that instantly appeared on screen was therefore considered final.
Our technology has also improved the quality of the debate before each vote, thanks to our Lumi Studio microphone queuing system. Not only could the chairman now see who was in the queue to speak, but councillors also had to indicate whether they were talking for or against the motion, allowing the chairman to give equal time to both sides. The system also provides a record of everyone who speaks on each motion and the length of time they are speaking, to ensure they don’t exceed their two-minute allocated time slot.
Lumi’s technology and expertise can help your meeting evolve into an event fit for the 21 st century, making it easier and quicker to manage, more transparent and more democratic, with equal time being given to all sides of the debate and no-one being allowed to control the microphone. We have transformed the meetings of the MAV. We can do the same for your LGA.