Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Whatever Happened to Transparency in Government?

"It is not only what we do, but also what we do not do for which we are accountable."
- Moliere

"As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence."
- Benjamin Franklin

In California, the Brown Act is the first thing new school board members learn about school board governance.

The preamble of California Government Code 54950

In enacting this chapter, the Legislature finds and declares that the public commissions, boards and councils and the other public agencies in this State exist to aid in the conduct of the people’s business. It is the intent of the law that their actions be taken openly and that their deliberations be conducted openly.

The people of this State do not yield their sovereignty to the agencies which serve them. The people, in delegating authority, do not give their public servants, the right to decide what is good for the people to know and what is not good for them to know. The people insist on remaining informed so that they may retain control over the instruments they have created.

This chapter shall be known as the Ralph M. Brown Act.

It becomes worrisome when new legislation and contracts are crafted to bypass the accepted rules of governance. What good then is something like the Constitution of the United States?

Click on the image to read the article.


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