Thursday, May 14, 2009

"Painful" Brown Act Violation Discussion

Reposting - PublicCEO Editorial May 14, 2009

The City of Orland had a discussion in an open City Council meeting last week that easily could have sent City Attorney Tom Andrews and City Manager Paul Poczobut crawling under the table.

According to the Chico Enterprise Record, two councilors at an Orland City meeting answered publicly to allegations of discussions with another councilor that violated Ralph M. Brown Act public meeting and conflict of interest laws.

Although it had to be painful for the city manager, we want to commend the Orland City Council for having the discussion in the open, where state law requires.

Not hiding under the desk.

The Brown Act is probably one of the most misunderstood and ignored local government laws in the state.

It is our experience that some local governments would have tried to hide this discussion.

Orland did not.

They had it in an open and public way – which is the best way to handle it.

The reality is that Brown Act violations happen. They happen all the time. The real question is what to do about it.

We like what Orland did. They may have an issue with a Councilmember or two but they will be well served by an open and honest process to address it.

PublicCEO.com is dedicated to serving the public administrators in California. However, one of our foundation principles is compliance with open meeting laws in both letter and spirit.

Ref: PublicCEO.com

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Thank you for taking time to read and respond to my Post. A quick sentence stating your opinion will be much appreciated - it's the reason I'm blogging, Mike