In 2015, Arcadia faced a lawsuit related to a closed City Council meeting that considered a potential Historic Resource Survey. This year, the Tule Lake Committee filed a lawsuit against the City of Tulelake and the Modoc Tribe for holding closed meetings that discussed the disposition of the historic World War II Tule Lake Segregation Center. As appointed decision-making bodies of local government, Planning and Historic Preservation Commissioners are subject to "Sunshine Laws," State statutes and local ordinances that require open and noticed public meetings for all deliberations and gatherings of a majority of the commission. Most often, violations of these laws fall under the state's Ralph M. Brown Act (Cal. Govt. Code 5490). In this webinar, attorney Michael G. Colantuono of Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley, PC will train commissioners, council members, board members - or anyone who is serving on a local decision-making body - how to avoid the most common pitfalls associated with open meeting laws. It will review case law and past examples to help reduce the risk of litigation and ensure that the public is given proper notice of meetings and other decisions. The webinar will focus on commissions that make decisions related to historic preservation, but the information will apply to any legislative body within local government.
You Will Learn...
- What constitutes a "meeting" under the Brown Act, and how commissions and boards can avoid some of the common pitfalls
- To whom the Brown Act applies
- What constitutes sufficient and timely public notice of a public meeting?
- How do advocates and other members of the local public ensure that their boards and commissions are holding lawful open meetings about historic resources?