by A Loyal Servant
I can’t bear the Public’s gasps and outcries of disbelief and disgust for my positions. “We may need to pull the partition between the Board and the audience and let them watch us on TV monitors.” threatened Caddo Parish School Board member, Ginger Armstrong.
If you have not been to a board meeting, please be aware that all board members and our attorney speak into microphones. There is no mike in the audience. Did you see the rowdy audience at the end that she was complaining about?
Louisiana Open Meetings Law
§4.1. Public policy for open meetings; liberal construction
A. It is essential to the maintenance of a democratic society that public business be performed in an open and public manner and that the citizens be advised of and aware of the performance of public officials and the deliberations and decisions that go into the making of public policy. Toward this end, the provisions of R.S. 42:4.1 through 10 shall be construed liberally.
(1) “Meeting” means the convening of a quorum of a public body to deliberate or act on a matter over which the public body has supervision, control, jurisdiction, or advisory power. It shall also mean the convening of a quorum of a public body by the public body or by another public official to receive information regarding a matter over which the public body has supervision, control, jurisdiction, or advisory power.
Can we just ignore that nasty little open meeting law?
Wait a minute. Did I hear board member Armstrong say she agrees with almost everything board member Crawley says? So can we expect a yes vote? Wait and see.
The Roadblock I was addressing was Board Member Larry Ramsey’s substitute motion. His substitute motion had nothing to do with my motion that called for a 5% reduction to the Central Office Operating Budget. The CFO and another board member were also discussing that we would be down to reducing paper clips, but yes we could reduce Central Office Budget by 5%. We had already cut 300 positions at the school sites, which included office clerks who administer various medications and etc. to students.
Well, I have to admit that sometimes, I am interrupted by applause from the citizens who give up their Tuesday afternoons and often evenings without any financial compensation, to watch their local government in action. Sometimes I’m embarrassed, but mostly, I worry that I will lose my train of thought. But whatever, their response, I am glad that they are interested enough to show up.
It is a great feeling when the public believes “I’m on the right track, Baby, I was born this way!”
How the Board voted:
Don’t get excited or confused. Mrs. Armstrong did not vote for my motion and I did not vote against my motion. The vote that was taken was for Mr. Ramsey’s substitute motion to mine, therefore since his passed, 8–4, my original motion did not get voted on.
I wonder if Mrs. Armstrong disagreed with my motion to cut 5% of the Central Office budget or if she agreed with me and was more concerned that her husband, who works in Central Office, might run out of paper clips. Maybe she should abstain from voting on Central Office issues?
I’m just wondering.
Yes, some of the post was for information and some was just for entertainment. You decide which parts.