CLARK CO., IL. (ECWd) -
The Illinois Attorney General's Public Access Counselor is looking into allegations that the Clark County Electoral Board violated the Open Meetings Act by not deliberating in public on their recent petition objection hearings.
I filed a complaint alleging the board did not deliberate in public. My purpose was to obtain a determination by the AG on whether the OMA was violated when the board attorney circulated from one member to the next, discussing and gathering their information and opinions, then produced the findings, all within around 3 hours of the hearings.
This same situation happened in the Edgar County Electoral Board Hearings back in 2013, and it was never satisfactorily resolved.
There are already AG opinions stating that chain emails, and chain telephone conversations violate the Act, and I am simply seeking a determination that equates those situations with this one where the attorney (or anyone for that matter) goes from one board member to the next, discusses and gathers the information, produces a written decision, and finally gets voted on with effectively no deliberation conducted in public.
The OMA specifically states in the opening paragraph that "
In order that the people shall be informed, the General Assembly finds and declares that it is the intent of this Act to ensure that the actions of public bodies be taken openly and that their deliberations be conducted openly.
Allegation and AG Letter below: