Tag Archives | Brown Act

Time to Bring California’s Open Meeting Law into the 21st Century

BY PETER SCHEER—-California’s open meeting law, the Brown Act, was enacted four decades before the arrival of the internet, a quarter century before the first commercial fax machines, and even a few years before “xerox” copying went mainstream. In all the years since, the Brown Act has been amended in ways big and small, but […]

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A&A: Redaction of investigative report

Q:  An outside attorney is employed to investigate a city council member. The client is the city council. May the attorney redact information and not provide the client with the entire file? The outside attorney heavily redacted a report and will not permit members of the city council to review the entire file. The city […]

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Asked & Answered

A&A: Board member sent out email supporting project coming up for a board vote

Q: The School Board is trying to accuse one trustee of a Brown Act violation because he sent out an email in support of a project they were going to be voting on in the near future. The email went to all trustees as well. None of them responded and no discussion was made back […]

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Asked & Answered

A&A: Agenda items failed to mention a parcel tax as part of ballot measure

Q: I would like an opinion on whether circumstances surrounding the County Board of Supervisors’ placement of Measure A1 on the Nov ballot in Alameda County violated the Brown Act. a. The measure was first discussed at a special retreat on May 8. The Agenda (see url below) includes no mention of the Oakland Zoo […]

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Asked & Answered

A&A: Brown Act rules for scheduling a meeting

Q: Can a majority of members of a body (city council) discuss the logistics (when and where) of scheduling a meeting, including the topic but no content, outside of an official meeting? My thought is yes because no information is exchanged, only the logistics. A: As I believe you are aware, the Brown Act, at Govt. Code section […]

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Asked & Answered

A&A: May I request to have agendas mailed to me?

Q: Can I request to have an agenda mailed to me at the time of posting?  And what is the time frame? A: The Brown Act provides that: “[a]ny person may request that a copy of the agenda, or a copy of all the documents constituting the agenda packet, of any meeting of a legislative […]

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A&A: Does the Brown Act require minutes from city council meetings?

Q: Are city councils required to have minutes? A: The Brown Act, the law that governs the extent to which local agencies such as city councils must conduct their meetings in a manner open to the public, does not require that a city council take minutes. The Brown Act only acknowledges that a minute book […]

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A&A: Does Brown Act apply to nonprofit and government agency overlap?

Q:  A nonprofit 501c3 foundation was set up to raise money for a public agency, incorporates the name of the agency into its name, uses the agency’s facilities and relies on the agency to act in the capacity of employer of its staff. Is it arguably a public agency, and as such subject to CPRA? […]

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A&A: Councilmembers texting during meeting a Brown Act violation?

Q: We have noticed a new trend during City Council meetings. We are seeing council and staff texting/emailing to each other while on the dais. This is occurring during the public comment item of the meeting and includes the city attorney. We would like to CPRA these texts but believe they will either claim they […]

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A&A: Is public college “executive board” subject to Brown Act?

Q: The Academic Senate of our public college has an established body called the Academic Executive Board, which is made up of seven or so members (including the president, vice president, etc.) of the Academic Senate. The Executive Board meets regularly and the Academic Senate bylaws state the meeting must be open to the public. […]

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