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Record files meetings complaint

The Record has filed a Kansas Open Meetings Act complaint about executive sessions last week by Centre’s school board.

Unofficial minutes of the board’s Feb. 1 meeting state the board went into executive session three times to discuss personnel pursuant to an exception for non-elected personnel under state law.

The minutes fail to say, without revealing confidentiality, what was discussed, as required by state law and attorney general opinions.

Superintendent Larry Geist, middle and high school principal Trevor Siebert, and middle and high school counselor Maranda McMichael participated.

The board did not take any action.

Geist said Tuesday that the minutes had not been officially approved.

Kansas Sunshine Coalition for Open Government and Kansas Press Association hotline lawyer Max Kautsch said the sessions clearly violated the law.

“There is no question the minutes fail to set forth a ‘short, plain statement’ that is required to be entered into the minutes before the motion to recess to executive session is approved,” he said. “As I’ve mentioned before, the AG (attorney general) has been very clear on this: The statement describing the subject(s) to be discussed must be more than a generic or vague summary, or a list of the subject(s) to be discussed.” 

The Record plans to file a similar complaint about a Marion City Council meeting Monday.

Last modified Feb. 8, 2023

 

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