I absolutely agree with Ms. Day regarding the need for government meetings to be held openly and with appropriate notification to “We, the People.” This would include official boards, committees, commissions and agencies.
Having been fairly participatory in the county government systems for a few years now, I have to say that in every group that I, personally, have been involved with, every avenue of communication has been sought and used, from legistar, to e-mails, to Facebook, to phone calls, to public postings, to personally delivered messages at open meetings, etc. Honest attempts have been made to publicize broadly across the county the “call to arms” to the citizenry of EDC.
The problem arises not out of an attempt to “meet behind closed doors” or “around the elected officials,” but how to entice and motivate the uninterested population with what we believe is important for all citizens to know. I’ve learned that items of interest to me may not be items of interest to everyone I know, not even my best friends. Things only become relevant to people … when they become relevant. So no matter how important we think some piece of information may be, sadly, not everyone is interested.
Interested people do seem to find the information about relevant groups, organizations and meetings. It’s the relevancy factor, not the “behind closed doors” factor. My question to Ms. Day is what meeting specifically have you been barred from or excluded? It’s not good enough, in a problem-solving discussion, to be vague about allegations. The only way to fix something is to be specific. What agency, board or commission has prevented you from being a participant? And how?
Lastly, since the agencies, boards and commissions that I am aware of can only make recommendations to the Board Of Supervisors (and even then with a public Open Comment period) and have been put into place to do exactly what it is you are seeking, give an avenue for public input, I again am wondering what agency, board or commission is “making rules and holding political power?” Seriously, I’d like to know.
If this is the case, I will join you in your campaign to help make the relationship between government and “We, the People” better.