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May 20, 2024

City Suing Its Former Labor Attorneys, Allison and Pappas Wright, For City Records Pursuant To FOIA Request –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On February 21, 2023

Silvis, IL. (ECWd) –

On February 7, 2023, the City of Silvis City Council held what we believe to be a closed session meeting in violation of the Open Meetings Act (“OMA”), in which we filed a Request for Review with the Attorney General’s Public Access Counselor (“PAC”) alleging the following violations of the OMA:

  1. February 7, 2023, Entered into closed session without a majority vote of the members present at an open meeting (Sec 2a),
  2. February 7, 2023, entered into closed session to discuss the Mayor and City Clerk which is not a permitted subject for closed sessions (Sec 2(c)),
  3. February 7, 2023, improperly prohibited the Mayor and City Clerk from attending the improper closed session (the Mayor was part of the public body and his presence counted toward the quorum, the Clerk has a duty to take meeting minutes),
  4. February 7, 2023, and permitting the city’s labor attorney to confiscate the closed session recording (Sec 2.06(e) – recording removed from the main office of the public body or its official storage location without a vote of the public body),
  5. February 14, 2023, and refusing to permit the Mayor access to the verbatim recording (Sec 2.06(e)

We also sent the city a request for the audio recording of the alleged closed meeting pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), knowing that any closed meeting improperly held was subject to having the recording publicly released, which is what we intend to do when it is provided to us.

The Silvis City Clerk responded to our FOIA request asking for more time to retrieve the audio recording and stating that the city will file a lawsuit against its former labor attorneys, Allison Wright and Pappas Wright, asking the court to order them to return that recording to the city as it is property of the city. We agreed to an extension of time to produce or properly deny the FOIA request for the recording.

Today, a two-count lawsuit was filed in the Circuit Court of Rock Island County, Illinois, seeking: 1) Mandatory Injunction to compel defendant attorneys to return the city’s records, legal files, and the audio recording of the February 7, 2023, closed session meeting, and, 2) an Injunction to prevent defendant attorneys from continuing to perform legal work for the city of Silvis.

SILVIS - Final Complaint for Injunction with Exhibits (1)

 

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1 Comment
  • Dave
    Posted at 19:31h, 21 February

    Sounds like someone has something to hide

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