City won’t reveal vote on filing appeal in lawsuit

By Linda Trest, Staff Writer
Posted 11/27/19

In an effort to try to understand the ongoing legal action between the City of Gerald and Bull Moose Tube, Co., The Republican requested some information.

The response from the city created only …

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City won’t reveal vote on filing appeal in lawsuit

Posted

In an effort to try to understand the ongoing legal action between the City of Gerald and Bull Moose Tube, Co., The Republican requested some information.

The response from the city created only more questions.

On Nov. 14, a Sunshine Request was made asking for the date that a vote was taken to approve filing an appeal to a judgement against the city in the case. The request also asked for the vote count in the decision.

Such a vote would typically be made in an executive session. Such a session was not posted between the city council’s regular meetings Oct. 10 and Nov. 14. 

After the October meeting, both Board of Alderman Ed Adams and City Clerk Jane Hungler told The Republican that a decision had not been made.

Yet, the city did file an appeal Nov. 5, so the question was asked when was this decided and how many aldermen agreed to the appeal?

In its official response, the city says it cannot provide an answer.

“To the extent that your records request seeks documents or materials that do not exist or contains requests for information or data, rather than a request for a specific and reasonably identified record of the City, such is not included in the response,” the city, or its attorney replied.

It could be concluded from that response that a vote was not taken on the appeal.

The city’s response also noted, “Your records request also seeks records that are closed pursuant to §610.021(1).”

In the past, the city has released whether or not motions were made or votes were taken in closed sessions. They also released the vote count.

It is understandable that in such a complex case, the city might not want to reveal their legal strategy  moving forward with an appeal.

Surely, the city can also understand the people’s right to know what is happening and where their elected officials stand on the decisions being made.

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