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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Tri-City Herald Editorial Connects the Taping Dots

This editorial from the Tri-City Herald describes a recent State Auditor's Office finding that Benton City held a bunch of illegal executive sessions. Then the editorial describes how the taping bill would have gone a long way toward preventing this:

"Tape recorders are cheap enough even for the smallest cities, and forcing government officials to think twice about whether their closed-door comments violate the law is the bill's aim, not a detriment.

"Such feeble arguments only highlight the obvious -- opponents of the bill don't want officials held accountable if comments made during an executive session violate the Open Public Meetings Act.

"And they won. The bad guys won. In Olympia.

"The bill is dead, as is the spirit of open meetings and accountability in too many of Washington's local governments."