Monday, October 13, 2014

APS Board walking back secrecy position?

The agenda for the APS School Board Meeting Wednesday, link,suggests the board might be revisiting their decision to keep settlements secret from the people who pay for them.

Consideration for Approval to Convene in Executive Session (secret)... for the Purpose of Attorney-Client Privilege Regarding Discussion of Threatened Litigation: Review of Brooks Matter (Action)
God only knows what that actually means, but the "threatened litigation" might be complaints filed over their efforts to keep secret; pertinent details of the Brooks settlement.

With respect to the language the board used on the agenda, the Open Meetings Act is pretty clear in the insistence that meetings in secret from the people, must be described with "reasonable specificity".

The question is not;
have they been as specific as the law requires?  
The question is;
have they been as specific as the law allows?
The distinction is important for at least two reasons
1.  The standards of conduct for which school board members are the senior-most role models; APS' student standards of conduct; the Pillars of Character Counts!, require them to be as specific as the law will allow in contrast to as specific as the law requires.
2.  Their deliberate refusal to be as candid, forthright and honest about their intentions as the law allows, creates the appearance of impropriety; if they are doing nothing wrong, why won't they tell the truth (candid, forthright, honest) about what they are doing?

There is no reason to be non-specific except to avoid the consequences of being specific.

No comments: