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Private CBOC Audit Subcommittee Meeting

Feb 16th, 2012
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  1. Subject: Re: CBOC Audit Committee Meeting Friday, February 17, 2012
  2. Date: Thu, 16 Feb 2012 12:12:53 -0800
  3. From: Don Gosney <dongosney@comcast.net>
  4. To: Charles Cowens <charley@cowens.net>
  5. CC: Bruce Harter <BHarter@wccusd.net>, Bill Fay <BFay@wccusd.net>,
  6. Magdy Abdalla <mabdalla@wccusd.net>, Martin Coyne <MCoyne@wccusd.net>,
  7. Robert Studdiford <studdiford@gmail.com>, Norma Martinez-Rubin
  8. <norma@evaluationfocused.com>, Tony Thurmond <tony@tonythurmond.com>,
  9. Charles Ramsey <charamsey@comcast.net>, Madeline Kronenberg
  10. <MKRONEN@aol.com>, Elaine Merriweather <elainemerriweather@gmail.com>,
  11. Antonio Medrano <amedrano3@sbcglobal.net>
  12.  
  13. Elected bodies have confidential meetings all of the time. When they
  14. meet with attorneys, when they're dealing with litigation or contract
  15. issues, when they're in negotiations--these are all exempted from the
  16. Brown Act. The Brown Act does not go so far as to directly address
  17. subcommittees but when a sub group smaller than half of the body meets
  18. they are not in violation of the Brown Act. For instance, we’re having a
  19. subcommittee meeting right now with this communiqué but it’s not
  20. required to be noticed, agendized, recorded or anything else.
  21.  
  22. Do you or Anton insist on being a part of every subcommittee meeting of
  23. your City Council, County Supervisors Municipal Advisory Committee or
  24. other legislative body? Why do you suppose that all of these
  25. bodies—going all the way up to the State legislature—can get away with
  26. not inviting the public to attend every confidential meeting but here at
  27. the level of the School Board Bond Oversight Committee it’s a requirement?
  28.  
  29. Have you or Anton ever insisted that you be allowed to sit in on the
  30. contract negotiations with the teachers, expulsion discussions or
  31. meetings with the attorneys when we’re sued or suing someone?
  32.  
  33. Anton never seemed to have a problem with holding meetings like this
  34. when he was on the body or the sub-body but now that he’s not does he
  35. feel that we’re in violation of the law? Is there a double standard
  36. playing out here?
  37.  
  38. As for speaking with the District’s legal counsel, I don’t know who that
  39. person is but I can’t imagine that they are without counsel. Considering
  40. the number of times we’re either sued or a citizen demands something I
  41. would think they have someone on standby to handle these situations. Of
  42. course, you could ask Dr. Harter and he could tell you the proper steps
  43. to take. But since the information I’ve been telling you all has come
  44. partly from Dr. Harter, I’m guessing that the people that are having a
  45. difficult time with this wouldn’t believe him anyway.
  46.  
  47. Don
  48.  
  49.  
  50. On 2/16/12 11:59 AM, "Charles Cowens" <charley@cowens.net> wrote:
  51.  
  52. > Anton,
  53. >
  54. > I do have serious Brown Act misgivings about the use of subcommittees on
  55. > CBOC. Handling confidential information and complying with Brown Act
  56. > requirements like meeting notice are not incompatible. I plan on asking
  57. > outside organizations concerned with open government about this. When I
  58. > have information from these organizations, I will go from there.
  59. >
  60. > Don,
  61. >
  62. > How exactly do you "address the District's attorneys directly"? Who are
  63. > they? I thought the District got rid of the position of District
  64. > Counsel. This would certainly be a nice time to have someone like that.
  65. >
  66. > Charley Cowens
  67. >
  68. > On 2/16/2012 9:53 AM, Don Gosney wrote:
  69. > > As I understand it, you are incorrect in that these meetings fall under
  70. > > the Brown Act and they are not open to the public. There is
  71. > > _confidential information_ discussed at these meetings that the general
  72. > > public is not privy to. This meeting is not noticed, there is no agenda,
  73. > > no minutes, no public comment and probably not even any coffee and
  74. donuts.
  75. > >
  76. > > Once the audit has been completed a draft version will be made available
  77. > > to the public and it will be presented to the CBOC for their
  78. > > consideration before being presented to the Board for their acceptance.
  79. > >
  80. > > This issue of subcommittee meetings being subject to the Brown Act has
  81. > > been brought up with you in the past, Anton, and nothing has changed.
  82. > >
  83. > > If you want to pursue this further, you might want to address the
  84. > > District’s attorneys directly.
  85. > >
  86. > > Don Gosney
  87. > > 929 Lassen Street
  88. > > Richmond, CA 94805-1030
  89. > > Home Office: (510) 233-2060
  90. > > Mobile: (510) 685-2403
  91. > > dongosney@comcast.net
  92. > >
  93. > >
  94. > >
  95. > >
  96. > > On 2/16/12 9:43 AM, "Anton Jungherr" <ajungherr@aol.com> wrote:
  97. > >
  98. > > At the February 1, 2012 Board meting Mr. Studdiford announced a
  99. > > meeting of the Audit Subcommittee on February 17, 2012.
  100. > >
  101. > > It is my understanding that CBOC Subcommittee meetings are subject
  102. > > to the Brown Act open meeting requirement.
  103. > >
  104. > > Do you plan to publish on the CBOC web site a Brown Act notice for
  105. > > this meeting?
  106. > >
  107. > > Anton Jungherr
  108. > > 121 Ash Court
  109. > > Hercules, CA 94547
  110. > > 510.799.1141 home/office
  111. > > 510.697.7212 cell
  112. > > 510.799.2124 fax
  113. > >
  114. >
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