Speaker on webcasting of select committees
03 December 2013
Media release – Speaker of the House of Representatives
Webcasting of select committees
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt Hon David Carter, announced today that a pilot project to webcast select committee proceedings has begun.
“Webcasting will play a vital role to increase transparency of select committees, and provides an opportunity for the public to witness our representative democracy in action”, said the Speaker.
Since 4 November 2013, select committees meeting in Wellington have been able to webcast their public hearings of evidence to the Parliament website, with webcasts available at http://www.parliament.nz/en-nz/about-parliament/see-hear/webcast-of-select-committees/.
Webcasts so far have included the Government Administration Committee hearing evidence on its Inquiry into the accessibility of services to Parliament, and the Privileges Committee hearing evidence on its Question of privilege regarding use of intrusive powers within the parliamentary precinct. Hearings have also been webcast of departments like Kiwirail and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand giving evidence to committees on their annual financial reviews, and of individuals and professional organisations discussing with committees how to improve legislation, like the Credit Contracts and Financial Services Law Reform Bill.
“Much of the detailed work of the Parliament occurs in select committees, and webcasting provides an opportunity for the people of New Zealand to see how parliamentarians are dealing with the issues of the day, that affect their lives and communities”, said the Speaker.
“This is a limited pilot project, intended to test the appetite of members and the public for webcasting of select committees. Comment on the pilot, and on webcasting in general, is welcome. For the pilot, one select committee will be able to be webcast at a time, from one of two designated committee rooms in Wellington. However, should feedback on the pilot be positive, further work will be undertaken to make sure webcasting facilities are available for all committees at all times.” Comment can be made through the webcasting page, or directed in hardcopy to Select Committee Services, Parliament Buildings, WELLINGTON 6160.
“Webcasting will help to bring our Parliament into the 21st century”, said the Speaker. “It is important that Parliament is relevant and accessible, and webcasting is one of the many ways we can ensure that this generation, and the generations to come, remain engaged in Parliament and informed about the issues that affect them”.