More ratepayers link to council online

MORE people are using Warrnambool City’s internet services.

Mayor Michael Neoh: social media fan.

Mayor Michael Neoh: social media fan.

There has been a significant rise in the number of people connecting with the council through social media.

More than 35,000 unique browsers accessed the city council’s main website between March and May, an increase of nearly 50 per cent on the same surveyed period last year.

Social media site Twitter was been harnessed by the council for promotional purposes. More than 1500 people now follow the city’s updates, compared to 681 during the same period last year.

Stocks for the council’s Facebook page have risen more gradually, with 822 “likes” this year in contrast to 618 in 2013.

Warrnambool mayor Michael Neoh said a growing number of residents were choosing to carry out business and interact with the council through online alternatives.

“All councils across Australia have some sort of online presence but the key is to keep it relevant for residents, which is what Warrnambool has done,” Cr Neoh said.

“More people look at council agendas and minutes online these days than in paper form, more people check out information about the council and community events through the website. It’s updated regularly, so it does provide relevant information.”

An active user of social media, Cr Neoh said social media services were another way for ratepayers to communicate directly with councillors about their views on the city council.

“Things like Facebook and Twitter are a great forum for discussion and as long as they’re used respectively, I think they help with debate and discussion,” the Warrnambool mayor said.

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