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Otago regional councillor Trevor Kempton uses his new iPad during a council meeting yesterday.
It was the first time the councillors had used them in a meeting, although chairman Stephen Woodhead and chief executive Peter Bodeker had used them for the past year.
Mr Bodeker said the set-up cost was about $12,000 with the costs to be offset by savings in staff time and paper as agendas and reports would be sent to councillors via the internet.
''It's cheaper than the old-fashioned way.''
Programmes loaded on to the devices allowed councillors to highlight and make notations. Councillors had received two training sessions on their use.
Cr Gretchen Robertson said the iPads had met total acceptance and would enable councillors to be more informed and effective. As part of the move, councillors now all had their own regional council email address.