Google Meet for Public Meetings/Hearings

This article is to act as a guide for Municipalities and School Districts within Massachusetts. Please make sure you check with your organization's Council to ensure you are meeting all required laws and regulations regarding open meeting law.

In this article, we will provide guidance on the following:

  • Video Call Etiquette For Large Groups
  • Setting up a Google Meet Video Call for Budget & Committee Meetings
  • Steps For Your Google Administrator

Video Call Etiquette For Large Groups

  1. Determine who the Moderator's Digital Assistant will be
    • This person needs to have a school/town email address
    • They will be responsible for recording the meeting and informing everyone that the meeting is being recorded
    • They will be the person who creates the calendar event and shares out the meeting link
    • They will be responsible for muting people if they forget to mute themselves
    • They will assist in determining whose turn it is to talk
  2. If you are in the meeting, mute yourself. Only unmute yourself when you are speaking. If you are calling in from a phone, use the mute option on your cell phone.
  3. Have a question or need to make a comment? Use the chat feature to let the Moderator know and wait until you are called on.

Setting up a Google Meet Video Call for Budget & Committee Meetings

  1. The Moderator's Digital Assistant will go to Google Calendar in their account, create the event, and add conferencing.
    • Click here for instructions on how to add video meetings to Calendar
    • Do not add live streaming. Live streaming will not be accessible to the public and is for internal use only.
    • Your meeting will have a limit of 250 participants. At this time, we do not have a solution for larger meetings. We are working on finding a solution that will be compatible with Open Meeting Law and will provide updates here.
  2. The Moderator should start the meeting 15 minutes before the actual start time. This will allow people to join in, make sure they mute their mics and become familiar with the chat section.
  3. When the meeting is about to start, let everyone know you are about to record. Use the instructions below to start recording the meeting. After recording starts, make an announcement letting everyone know this meeting will be audio and video recorded.
  4. During the meeting, monitor who has not muted themselves and mute them as needed
  5. At the end of the meeting, make a copy of the chat dialogue and send it to the note taker
  6. After the meeting is finished, you will be emailed a copy of the meeting. This copy needs to be shared with the appropriate people to post to websites, social media sites, etc.

Steps For Your Google Administrator

  1. Log in to the Google Admin Console and make sure Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet and Google Hangouts are turned on
  2. Within Google Meet and Google Hangouts make sure Stream and Recording are turned on
  3. Log in to the Google Vault app and check Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet to ensure they meet your organization's requirements around data retention.

Please check out the attachments below for more resources.

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