A Few Clarifications Regarding Open Meeting Story



I would like to clarify a few points regarding the article printed in the July 9 issue entitled, "Town council accused of open meeting law violation."

I did not allege that the council members (whether it was three or four) met and held an illegal meeting.

According to Arizona Revised Statutes 38-431 Definitions 4, "Meeting" means the gathering, in person or through technological devices, of a quorum of members of a public body at which they discuss, propose or take legal action, including any deliberations by a quorum with respect to such action."

I do not know if communication was through e-mail, FAX, telephone or Pony Express. I do know that four members of the former council (including two members of the current council) signed a memo constituting a majority, thus violating the open meeting law.

In my conversations with Laura Woodall of the AG's office, she alleged that I had other issues with the town. I confirmed that point, however, at this time I am concerned only with this violation of the open meeting law.

I did not tell the Roundup reporter that I have my own attorney looking into this matter.

Per Arizona Revised Statutes 38-431.05 B. 1, "Ratification shall take place at a public meeting within thirty days after discovery of the violation or after such discovery should have been made by the exercise of reasonable diligence." Discovery was made in March when then-councilman Murphy talked to the town attorney. Ratification should then have taken place at the April council meeting. Perhaps the town and council hoped this matter would just "go away." I refused to drop the issue and it was ultimately placed on the agenda for the June 27 council meeting executive session.

Pat Randall, Payson

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