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Zoom Public Meetings (Brown Act Meetings)

Now that San Rafael has moved to the enterprise account, we have multiple team members creating webinars for our public meetings. We have created this guide in an effort to assist you in making sure meetings are created with the correct settings and the community can participate in City business. We hope you find it useful!

Creating Webinars

When setting up a webinar for an upcoming Board, Commission and Committee (BCC) meeting, you will want to confirm the settings are accurate. A few things to note about this:

  • Do not require registration
  • Do not use a webinar password
  •  Enable practice session (more on this below)
  • Automatically record to the cloud should be enabled
  • Do not approve or block entry for out of country users

Alternate Hosts

Enter the email of the alternate host. This should be someone who can start the meeting if you were unable to. Each Brown Act meeting must have an alternate host selected to limit the chance of cancelled meetings due to an absence by the creator of the meeting. For example, each City Council meeting would have the Deputy City Clerk and one other person who will be in attendance at the meeting, should anything arise where the City Clerk was unable to attend.


If you received a request for an interpreter, you can enable this function. The video below reviews the proper settings in your account that are needed to have interpretation. Additionally, you can toggle between interpreters by selecting the globe and beginning to type the interpreters name you'd like to toggle into the Spanish channel, the click 'update'.

Adding Panelists

Once you save the meeting, a new section will appear under 'Invitations'. Across from 'invite panelists', select 'edit' to enter names and email addresses of board members and staff. Everyone with a Panelist Invitation will have the ability to join with their pre-set name, and have microphone/camera permissions that attendees to not have.

Enter their name and professional title: "Jane Doe, Board Member", "Jane Doe, Commissioner", "Jane Doe, Staff Liaison"

Enter their email address.

Once all of the panelists have been entered, you can save and it will send them their invitations. I typically re-send the invitations an hour before the meeting starts so they can easily access the invitation.

Starting the Meeting

Once it is time to start the meeting, you will start the practice session. This allows you to start the meeting and set-up closed captioning or interpreter settings prior in advance without the public listening to you run tests for PowerPoints. Panelists will be able to join during the practice session, but no attendees can join until you start the meeting. No City business may be discussed during this time. This is purely to make sure technology is working properly and everything is set-up for the meeting.

Enable Closed Captioning

During the Practice Session, you can enable closed captioning be clicking the 'Live Transcript' button and then selecting 'enable auto-transcript'. This will allow attendees to read the subtitled closed captioning during the meeting.

Start the Webinar

Start the Webinar a few minutes prior to the meeting to allow attendees to join by selecting the red 'Start the Webinar' button. It will automatically start recording the meeting, so do not stop the recording. We will be downloading the recording and uploading the video to YouTube so members of our community can watch it after the meeting.


If you have any questions about setting up your webinar, or questions about webinars in general, please feel free to reach out to our office at anytime:


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