Opinion Columns & Blogs

Online legislative forum no substitute for public meetings

The Wichita Eagle

Before the 2016 session convenes Jan. 11, the south-central Kansas legislative delegation will get some parting words from voters at a town hall from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Sedgwick County Courthouse. The representatives and senators also will hear from educational leaders and local governments later in the week. Rep. Mario Goico, R-Wichita, who has chaired the delegation for the past year, told The Eagle he plans to set up an online forum to allow constituents to provide ongoing input to the group. That’s fine, but why not revive the practice of regular public forums throughout the session? Such face-to-face meetings not only provide lawmakers with real-time feedback about legislative issues but help voters assess legislators at re-election time. – Rhonda Holman