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Monday, August 16, 2021

PAC Issues 6th Binding Opinion Finding OMA Violation for Failure to Record Closed Sessionn

Thanks again to one of our readers who shared another binding PAC opinion - let's hope the PAC can get its website up and running again soon as it's been a long time since we've been able to access the binding opinions (and for members of public bodies that need to access the online OMA training). 

In PAC Op. 21-006, the PAC found a public body in violation of the Open Meetings Act for failing to record its closed session. According to the PAC's opinion, the district employee who usually took the minutes and kept the recordings for district meetings was not asked to attend this particular closed session, which included committee members and the district's legal counsel. Following the meeting, the employee filed a request for review with the PAC alleging that she believed the committee failed to record its closed session and claiming that the committee discussed topics outside the scope of closed session. In the district's response to the request for review, the district stated it had forgotten to turn on the recorder and would put practices in place to ensure compliance at future meetings. The PAC found the district in violation for failing to record the closed session but did not address the allegation that the discussions in closed session were outside the scope of permitted exceptions, finding that allegation speculative.


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