Open government roundup: Developer sues Richmond over hasty decision on Point Molate

A developer is suing the City of Richmond alleging a violation of the Brown Act, the state’s open meeting law, in voting to deny special taxing in relation to a plan for 1,400 homes at Point Molate. The developer claimed there was scant time between meetings and said the expeditious settling of the matter indicated the possibility of secret or serial meetings. (Richmond Confidential, June 9, 2022, byi Madeline Taub)

The Cypress town council is being sued for voting 4-1 in secret in March to reject district elections for the city council. Now the four in the majority are directing council member Frances Marquez to release records relating to her dissenting vote. (Voice of OC, June 13, 2022, by Angelina Hicks)

American Canyon is claiming Vallejo violated the Brown Act in voting to proceed with a plan to build 48 units of housing for the homeless near the border between the two cities. American Canyon said in its agenda for the meeting, Vallejo only said they were accepting a grant and left out the nature and location of the project. (Napa Valley Register, June 9, 2022, by Edward Booth)

One member of the Del Mar city council accused another of communicating about a bluff stabilization project with other council members while outside of public meetings. Councilwoman Terry Gaasterland denied the accusations. (The Coast News Group, June 8, 2022, by Laura Place)

The California Fair Political Practices Commission rejected a claim that there was a violation of campaign finance rules during a fundraising event to support the election of certain candidates to the Santa Cruz County board of supervisors. (Santa Cruz Local, May 27, 2022, by Kara Meyberg Guzman)

Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu resigned under fire for providing non-public information on a real estate deal during a closed session council meeting. (Nation of Change, May 24, 2022, by Andrew Emett)

The Fairfield City Council neglected to specify what actions it took during a closed session in May. The session concerned complaints by a cannabis permit holder that Councilwoman Catherine Moy made slanderous and libelous comments during a previous council meeting. (Daily Republic, May 20, 2022, by Todd R. Hansen)

The Hemet City Council held three closed sessions on the issue of a missing city manager and failed to report any decisions or actions. FAC’s David Snyder said the council need not release any records but was required to report outcomes especially if they fired the manager. (The Press-Enterprise, May 11, 2022, by Monserrat Solis)

Karen Viele in Cal Coast, May 8, 2022, writes, “The San Simeon Community Services District missed the window to appoint a board member to fill a vacancy, after it wrongfully withheld the names of those running for the seat from the public.”

A Montecito Sanitary District board member resigned over what he claimed were the board’s failure to acknowledge violations of the Brown Act. According to reporter Melina Burns, edhat santa barbara, April 21, 2022, Gary Fuller said during the dispute over the merger of the sanitary district with the Montecito Water District, there was a meeting between “water district representatives and officials of the Santa Barbara County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO), the agency that oversees district consolidations, without first obtaining the authorization of the sanitary board, and without reporting back on the meeting.”

A redistricting task force in San Francisco was confronted with nearly a 100 citizens concerned there was insufficient transparency in the redrawing of supervisor districts. (Mission Local, April 11, 2011, by Annika Hom)

The San Benito County district attorney agreed with a citizen that the mayor violated the Brown Act during the March 7i council meeting. The mayor had prevented her from criticizing the city council during public comment. FAC’s David Loy said about the incident, “If you want to sit on the City Council you have to be willing to take the heat and criticism from the public. That’s just how democracy works.” BenitoLink, April 4, 2022, by John Chadwell)