California Municipal Law Blog

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Municipal Law Blog

Legal updates on current legislation and court cases affecting California local government

Category Archives: Meetings

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Governor Signs Law to Require Agency Reports Before Approving Changes to Executive Compensation or Benefits

Posted in Legislative Updates, Meetings, Uncategorized
On August 23, 2016, Governor Brown signed SB 1436 (Bates), which mandates that local agencies report out certain information before changing the compensation or benefits of their “executives.”  Under this new law, legislative bodies (e.g., city councils, boards of supervisors, or boards of directors) for agencies must “orally report a summary of a recommendation” for… Continue Reading

Agencies Don’t Have to Cancel Meetings When Website Outages Temporarily Affect Availability of Online Agendas

Posted in Meetings
Local agency officials are well aware of the basic requirements for public-meeting agendas.  They know, for instance, that agendas for regular meetings must be posted at least 72 hours in advance.  In light of legislation that took effect in 2012, they also know that if their agencies post agendas online—which most local agencies now do—the… Continue Reading

Court Holds Mistaken Agenda Reference Does Not Prevent Holding of Closed Session

Posted in Meetings, Recent Court Decisions
What happens when a meeting agenda refers to the wrong legal authority for a closed-session item an agency considers?  If it’s clear to the public what action the agency may take, there is no Brown Act violation.  According to a recent court opinion, which dismissed a lawsuit as “hypertechnical,” a mistaken code reference used to describe a… Continue Reading

State Commission Finds that Brown Act’s “Serial Meeting” Prohibition May Impede Good Government

Posted in Meetings
Does the Brown Act sometimes get in the way of good government?  According to the Little Hoover Commission, a think-tank agency that studies the performance of state government, the answer is yes.  After comprehensively studying how the Brown Act regulates “serial meetings”—discussions that occur among more than two council or board members outside of a… Continue Reading

Disruptive Behavior at Public Meetings: Balancing the Constitutional Rights of Citizens with the Duty to Conduct Meetings in an Orderly Manner

Posted in Meetings
During the course of their public service, many council members and staff will encounter the displeased citizen who often seems more intent on disrupting the governmental process than contributing to it in any meaningful way.  When this scenario is encountered, council members and staff will naturally desire to take steps to control the situation and… Continue Reading