City Manager Derek Brindisi’s PACTV show this week in Plymouth
PLYMOUTH – In the time it takes to watch a news program about fires in towns you’ve never been and crashes on streets where you’re likely never to be, you can tune it to PACTV to know what is happening where you actually live.
The organization’s multitude of local government, educational and community programs recently welcomed a new face and a new show to its programming.
‘This Week in Plymouth’ is the creation of City Manager Derek Brindisi.
“The show is really about trying to correct a lot of the misinformation and misinformation that exists with the climate that we find ourselves in,” he said, pointing to social media sites such as Pages. local Facebook groups.
Brindisi is no stranger to PACTV or the role cable access can play in communities of all sizes.
He served for 15 years as director of public health for Worcester. He said Worcester Community Cable Access, like Plymouth, had a long list of programs to serve the city of 185,000.
Although he does not have his own program, he has appeared in a professional capacity more than once on the show ‘Health Matters’, which is a production of the Worcester District Medical Society.
He said he was also inspired by both his program and a general philosophy of improving community communication from one of Worcester’s city managers who appeared on a local radio station for half a year. -hour each week to do the same kind of municipal relaxation as “This week.”
Before becoming City Manager in March, Brindisi had served as Plymouth’s Deputy City Manager from 2015 to 2017, so he was well acquainted with PACTV and its capabilities.
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“PACTV has a strong presence,” he said.
His predecessor, former city manager Melissa Arrighi, also had a regular show on PACTV.
Between these roles, he served for five years as the town manager of Upton in the county of Worcester, a town of just 8,000 people, a fraction of Plymouth’s 60,000.
Whatever thoughts he might have had to communicate through more than board meetings were put on hold due to the small size of the city.
“Cable access was virtually non-existent there,” he said. “It never took off.”
Give a hand
Brindisi reached out to PACTV shortly after her March 14 debut date. The first episode aired at the end of April. He has filmed six episodes so far, since taping on June 13.
“I didn’t ask for anything which they refused,” he said.
The weekly filming of the show is facilitated thanks to the involvement of host Donna Rodriguez, senior producer for the organization as well as its director of government programming.
“She’s awesome,” Brindisi said. “She makes you feel more relaxed, like you’re having a conversation in a cafe.”
Rodriguez is no stranger to PACTV or hosting a show, as she has been associated with PACTV and its Creative Media Services division for just over 20 years, serving as a producer and director, as well as a host. of several programs at that time. .
Brindisi said he and Rodriguez communicated on the show via email during the week.
During the June 13 taping, they talked for several minutes about the topics, with the seasoned interviewer asking probing questions and noting down a frame minutes before sitting down for the one-take program.
On the most recent episode, Brindisi discussed the upcoming special town meeting on June 21, specifically the issue that gave rise to the meeting, the proposed purchase of 25 acres of land in Chiltonville that could potentially serve as the site of a new fire station and headquarters. , as well as a new police station on the road.
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When the go-ahead was given and the cameras went dark, they stayed in conversation for a while, coordinating the broadcast of a virtual-only board meeting later that afternoon and evening. presentation of the municipal meeting which would take place just after. They figured out who would be where and when so PACTV knew who to send where and when.
“They do an amazing job,” Brindisi said.
He wants the show to expand to the point of inviting department heads and representatives of city agencies to attend. He recently shared the show with new board chair Betty Cavacco and floated the idea of adding an appeal element to the program.
“One of my top priorities is finding new ways to communicate with the public,” he said. “It’s still evolving.”
“This Week in Plymouth” airs Tuesday mornings on Comcast 15 or Verizon 47 with repeats throughout the week. The program can also be viewed online at PACTV.org.