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Where the TRUTH starts. Public Pension Reform. Law Enforcement News. Officer Down News. Collective Bargaining. Corruption. - See more at: http://www.dukesblotter.com/#sthash.gzOejJCT.dpuf

Officer Down

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

NEWS: Agenda law complied with in varied ways in Franklin Park, Northlake

The amendment went into effect on Jan. 1. Mayor Jeff Sherwin of Northlake said he wasn’t aware of the amendment.

--I am not sure if I find this hilarious or horrifying. 
How does a mayor not know what laws are passed that affect the operation of his town?
Maybe the same one that forgets to lower the U.S. Flags to half staff in town on the proper days.--
Duke

Story at Pioneer Press

BY MARK LAWTON
mlawton@pioneerlocal.com
March 26, 2013 11:44AM

An amendment to the open meetings act has met with a mixed response from local governments.

In July 2012, Gov. Pat Quinn signed House Bill 4687 into law. The bill requires that the notice and agendas for public meetings be made continuously available to the public for 48 hours before the meeting. Government entities can post the notice and agenda on their websites to meet the requirement.

According to the governor’s office, the amendment was inspired by a court case involving a municipality that posted a paper agenda in a building that was locked on weekends.

The amendment went into effect on Jan. 1. Mayor Jeff Sherwin of Northlake said he wasn’t aware of the amendment.

In Northlake, a paper copy of the city council meeting agenda is posted in city hall on the Thursday before the Monday meeting. City hall, however, is closed part of Saturday and all of Sunday.

The city recently updated its website, which does include notice of upcoming city council meetings but does not include agendas.

“Now that we have a new website up, we can just throw it on the website,’ Sherwin said. “It’s not a big deal.”

Over in Leyden Township, board meetings are held on the second Tuesday of the month. Administrator Greg Ignoffo said the township is meeting the requirement with meeting agendas and notices.

“They are posted in the front window,” Ignoffo said.

Kristin McMurray suggested public meeting notices and agenda should also be posted on a website. McMurray is editor of the Sunshine Review, a nonprofit that promotes openness and transparency in government websites.

“Not having a website is inexcusable in this day and age,” McMurray said. “Information should not only be available but also accessible.”

Leyden Township has a limited website with only a single page. Ignoffo said he’s “hopeful” that in the next 60 days that will be expanded and eventually each township department will have its own page on the website.

In Franklin Park, agendas and notices of village trustee meetings are posted on the village website along with copies of the resolutions or laws to be voted on — something it started long before the amendment to the open meetings act was signed. The village also posts paper copies in village hall.

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