Friday, May 02, 2008

Open Meeting Law victory

I heard from my sister while I was driving home that we won a victory in the Open Meeting Lawsuit victory. Since Mccrea v. Flaherty was appealed by the City Council it will now be case law that the way that Michael Flaherty and the City Council interprets the Open Meeting Law is illegal, and the way that Kathleen Devine, Shirley Kressel and I interpret it is correct.

Of course, the Globe and Herald had two horrible articles in the paper today about it, and they clearly did not read nor understand the ruling. We won outright on some matters, and on the other matters the court took the time to explicitly deny the arguments(excuses) of the council as to why they were violating the law.

What the appeals court did do was agree that the City Council should be allowed an opportunity to present more evidence as to why their meetings were legal, even though the council was the party that moved for Summary Judgment.

So far, the council has spent approximately $50,000 to $100,000 of legal fees to fight for their right to have 6 members go into a room to discuss matters, then have those 6 leave a room and 6 more enter a room to discuss matters. Then when they have sorted everything out, not in the public eye, they will rubber stamp a decision at a council meeting.

Of course, they have rejected all of our olive branches to stop the litigation and try and craft a progressive, country leading open meeting policy that would really include the public.

And they wonder why only 11 percent or so voted in the election.


the zak said...

At City Hall Departmental Annual Reports are public documents kept hidden by transmitting the Annual Reports as memoranda to the Mayors Office. Departmental Annual Reports are by Ordinance supposed to be reported to the City Council.

A list indexing public documents of our city is needed. Compiling such a list would make the public information of our municipal government more accessible for people interested, concerned about civic affairs.

Joventure said...

I'm a now, former news writer who covered council meetings in Maine. I've been punished, and hit with fraudulent legal charges I now I have to defend and have tied up years of my life because of the work I did exposing similar important issues like this. Thank you Kevin McCrea, Shirley Kressler, and Kathleen Devine for getting this matter the attention that it deserves, not to just help the people of Boston, but perhaps civil affairs around the country. I just hope the harassment that is happening to me doesn't happen to you. Feel free to see my blog, and Congratulations on your victory.