Should be resolved in favor of openness

Code of Iowa Chapter 21.1 contains a magnificent directive: This chapter seeks to assure, through a requirement of open meetings of governmental bodies, that the basis and rationale of governmental decisions, as well as those decisions themselves, are easily accessible to the people. Ambiguity in the construction or application of this chapter should be resolved in favor of openness.

Finally, the Iowa Supreme Court addressed the issue of Boards of Supervisors using agents/employees to circumvent open meetings.  Read the Court’s opinion here.

As a result of the Court’s ruling, in future public meetings, you should expect to hear the basis and rationale for government decisions.  Or your worst fears may be realized when you discover there is no rationale for the decisions.  In either case, you will be informed and you will have an opportunity to address the decisions or indecisions when you cast your vote.  And that’s good for our government!  -Joel D. Miller – Linn County Auditor

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