How to cure and correct an improper action
Q: A Commission had four email transmissions between a majority of its members prior to its meeting this week, of which I have copies. The City Attorney found out what was happening and told them to stop it since they were violating the Brown Act, but the meeting went forward anyway. How do we best proceed to get their decision undone?
A: Assuming the meeting was held in violation of the Brown Act, then you may seek to void an action taken at an illegal meeting. The requirements for taking such an action require you to seek to have the agency “cure and correct” the action taken at the improperly held meeting, and then bring a lawsuit if they do not. The requirements are very specific, they have very short deadlines, and they are generally strictly enforced. Review Government Code section 54960.1(a) carefully, and find an attorney to assist you if possible.
In order to void an agency action, the following steps are required:
(a) Notice and a demand to “cure and correct” the violation must be given, in writing, within 90 days from the date the action was taken. (30 days if the basis for the notice is that the action was not on an agenda or not adequately described).
(b) The local agency has 30 days to take action.
(c) If the local agency responds and refuses to correct the problem or does nothing, the challenger has 15 days to initiate court proceedings to nullify the action.