Kane Co. (ECWd) -
In spite of U46 Board member Traci Ellis's claim she wanted the naked monkey put on the table, as we suspected and wrote about in this article, she voted NO and the cover-up continues.
Over the last several months Ellis has led the charge with accusations that another board member lied about what Ellis said during a closed session meeting and continued efforts to restrict access to the record. Only After legal action was taken did all board members get to listen to what was said and now, even after it was declared "confidentiality no longer exists", the board voted 4:3 to NOT release the tape to the public.
We challenge the board to send this audio to the State's Attorney to determine if the content of the meeting violated the Open Meetings Act. We know they won't, because multiple sources, some of which were in the actual meeting, have told us Ellis's comments referencing the KKK and citizens by name actually took place. Ellis insists that is not true, yet she continues to block access to the record which would do one of two things, prove her correct or prove her to be the one lying about what was said. Ellis goes out of her way to claim she is supportive of transparency yet has blocked the release of this audio from day one. Her actions appear to be speaking louder than her words.
One public comment during the meeting focused on what it has cost the district in legal fees and others expenses related to the ongoing challenge for board members to be able to listen to this audio. This person went on to claim a vote of yes must be followed with an explanation as to how such a vote helps the district and its students.
I guess this person failed to realize had this group of board members just allowed the other board members to exercise their rights as elected officials in the first place, there would have never been any legal expenses. Instead, these people have gone out of their way to restrict access to records that the law says they do in fact have a right to listen to. That obstruction continues to this day in spite of the law being changed to address this out of control group sitting on this board.
The four board members who voted to keep this record from the public have lost all credibility with the public as it relates to any transparency issue. The public has a right to know the actions of their elected officials, and when confidentiality is no longer applicable, they should release the record. Most people understand that those with something to hide will fight such action any way possible.
Please consider a donation to the Edgar County Watchdogs.