The Tuesday, August 13, 2019 city council agenda includes an executive session item (closed meeting) captioned as:
“Briefing from counsel on legal guidelines for communicating with citizens about a bond election”
Why the secrets?
What could the city attorney be telling city council in private that members of the public should not know about? Is the plan to teach council how to lie to us or otherwise deceive us? Could it be that the city attorney is going to tell them not to make false promises?
The Texas Open Meetings Act allows council to go into closed session for the following reasons:
- certain specific personnel matters
- discussions about the value or transfer of real property
- discussions about security personnel, security services, or a security audit
- discussions about a prospective gift or donation to a governmental body
- discussions about potential items on tests conducted relating to licensing of individuals to engage in an activity
- discussions of certain economic development matters
- discussions of certain competitive matters is the city owns an electric or gas utility
- issues relating to emergencies and disasters
Schooling the council about bond elections is not in the list.
Certain consultations with the city attorney are allowed.
Take a look at this:
It looks like the proposed closed session will not be legal.
Shouldn’t the city attorney know the laws and follow them?
We deserve better
These people have not cared about the laws or the voting public for more years than I can recount. They continue to thumb their collective nose at us in the certain knowledge that not enough of us will get involved to beat them at the ballot box. Let’s face it. We may be “El Paso Strong,” but we’re still El Paso Apathetic.
I doubt that Ms Nieman was picked for her expertise in and adherence to the law.
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“Laws”?? “We don’t need no stinkin’ LAWS, except when it is to OUR political advantage, over these stupid, ignorant peons”. “WE can sucker punch THEM and THEY won’t even know what hit them”. So much for their “Touching, compassion, we are all one big El Paso Strong FAMILY”… Okay, okay, except when WE decide to screw THEM and hide, lie about it”. Hide, lie, deny, deceive, cover up. Margo and his minions are as crooked as EPISD. Just one big Society of Corruption in El Taxo. Agree, John Dungan.
This is the reason they are probably using the executive session excuse: “discussions of certain economic development matters”.
All wordplay. If they can loosely tie in any of those reasons, then they justify keeping city business out of the public eye.