WHITESIDE CO., IL. (ECWd) -
According to documents we received from the Illinois Attorney General's Public Access Counselor ("PAC"), on June 13, 2017, the PAC issue two separate determinations stating the Whiteside County Airport violated the Open Meetings Act in 2016.
The first violation occurred when the Airport board decided to move into closed session to discuss issues with the Fixed Base Operator contract, when there was no exception allowing such discussions during closed sessions. The AG Found:
- At no time did the board discuss "setting the price" of lease or sale of public property [Section 2(c-6)] and the actual discussion did not apply to this exception
- The scope of Section 2(c-5) does not include discussion of property owned by the airport, it was not a proper reason to close the meeting
- The Airport must make the verbatim recording of [the entire] illegally closed session available to the public
The second violation was because the Airport did not properly post the special meeting agenda 48 hours in advance of the special meeting and have it available for 48 continuous hours prior to the Special Meeting.
There are more losses on the way for this Airport as the issue of illegally hiring a private attorney to do the statutory job of the State's Attorney is still not settled - but it will be - all in due time.
We will post the audio recording of the illegal closed session as soon as we receive it.