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Zoom Broadcasts Dropped Due to Technical Issues

The virtual attendees of Prospect Heights City Council meetings may have noticed a significant change recently, as the city has decided to discontinue the use of Zoom for their gatherings. In an effort to adapt to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, only a select few towns, including Prospect Heights, had offered Zoom options for remote participants. However, as of mid-May, the Zoom meeting access codes have been removed from the bi-weekly meeting agendas. Prospect Heights officials cited technical difficulties as the main reason for this decision, expressing concerns about potential disruptions that could violate the Open Meetings Act and hinder public participation. Instead, the city will continue to provide live streaming services via local channel 17 and YouTube replays.

City Administrator Joe Wade emphasized that while Zoom had served its purpose during the emergency declaration period, the city’s primary focus is to ensure the smooth functioning of government operations. In addition to technical issues, an incident involving a “porn hack” during a Zoom meeting in April raised further concerns about the platform’s security and stability. Although there has been no public mention of the incident by Prospect Heights since its occurrence, the removal of Zoom meetings suggests a shift towards prioritizing reliable communication channels. While state law still permits elected officials to participate via Zoom for specific reasons, the city administration intends to reevaluate the Zoom situation in the near future, as mentioned by Wade during the recent Prospect Heights City Council meeting on July 10.

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