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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Sauk County joins the Blogosphere'o'cheese


Sauk County government is about to enter the blogosphere.

As part of a project described as one of the first of its kind statewide, the county will develop an online blog and discussion forum allowing citizens to post comments for the world to see.

The Web site — developed by Baraboo Interactive Services for $1,600…
What, they couldn’t just use blogger?

…will feature information about a citizen steering committee working to update Sauk County's comprehensive plan.

Steering committee members will be able to post their thoughts on topics ranging from county-wide economic development to land use planning. Once the text is posted to the site, citizens can log on and post their reactions.

Citizens will also be able to post comments in a discussion forum that will include several subjects, such as transportation, sustainability, education environment and natural resources.

"This is an opportunity to really pick the brains of the public in Sauk County," said Brian Simmert, a planner with the county Department of Planning and Zoning.

He said zoning staff are hoping more than 100 people submit comments online.

Citizens who want to post comments will have to fill out an online registration form and verify that they are not Sauk County supervisors.
Supervisors can’t post, because that might violate Open Meetings laws. They’re also worried about people posting insulting or obscene comments, because moderating them might raise First Amendment concerns.

It is, after all, a government-owned website. Not sure they really have anything to worry about, there, but they’re the experts.

Comprehensive planning isn’t exactly the most stimulating topic, so odds are I won’t be following up on this (or maybe I will – depends on how annoying it all is to Jib). I just wanted you all to know that Sauk County is way ahead of all your backward counties when it comes to this stuff.