Ralph M. Brown Act

News & Analysis as of

State Constitution Now Requires Local Agencies to Follow Brown and Public Records Acts - Whether or Not State Reimburses...

Voters Pass Proposition 42 and Create a Constitutional Amendment - California voters just approved Proposition 42, a state constitutional amendment to eliminate the requirement that the state reimburse costs incurred...more

And the Survey Said… Let There be Sunshine!

The people of California are clamoring for more – more sunshine and transparency. It is the mantra being heard across the state. Next month, Californians will vote on Proposition 42 and whether to amend the California...more

Weekly Recap Ethics News and Trends – February 24, 2014

Public servants with the utmost integrity also need to be aware of what is happening ethically around the state. In today’s climate, every public agency’s image is impacted by the missteps or misconduct of others. Below...more

Best Practices For Compliance With SB 751 - Practical Tips for Publicly Reporting on Legislative Body Actions Taken and Votes or...

California Senate Bill 751, which went into effect January 1, requires the legislative body of a local agency to publicly report any action taken and the vote or abstention on that action of each member present. This new law...more

New Tools to Comply with the Brown Act and Increase Transparency

Meeting management is big business for governments at every level, and the recent enactment of SB 751 has many public agencies reviewing the policies and tools they use to manage their public meetings. SB 751 requires...more

Upcoming Changes to California’s Open Meeting Laws

Three bills recently signed by the governor will bring changes to the Brown Act beginning January 1, 2014. The Brown Act governs the conduct of public agency meetings and imposes a variety of requirements to maintain openness...more

New Law Requires Public Report on Action and Vote of Each Member in Open Sessions - Changes to Brown Act Effective January 1, 2014

California Senate Bill 751, recently signed into law, will require all legislative bodies to publicly report any action taken in any meeting, and the vote or abstention on that action of each member present. The bill is...more

Ethics Laws and the Importance of Transparency for Public Officials [Video]

Matthew "Mal" Richardson, who serves as city attorney of Stanton and assistant city attorney of Lake Forest, talks about the Brown Act, ethics training for public officials and other important laws and regulations that ensure...more

Constitutional Amendment Proposes to Exempt Public Records Act and Brown Act Mandates from Reimbursement

Amendment Subject to a Vote of the People in June 2014 - In accordance with the procedures for amendment of the California Constitution, two-thirds of each house of the State Legislature has approved Senate...more

CEQA Determination Is Item of Business That Must Be Agendized Under Brown Act, Fifth District Holds

In a partially-published opinion, the Fifth District Court of Appeal held that the Merced County Planning Commission’s failure to mention in its posted agenda that it was considering adoption of a mitigated negative...more

To Comply With The Brown Act, Consideration Of A CEQA Document Must Be Listed As A Separate Agenda Item From Consideration Of...

A county planning commission posted a meeting agenda that included an item on a potential approval of a subdivision application. At the meeting, the commission not only approved the subdivision, it also approved a Mitigated...more

Local Legislative Bodies Must Expressly Agendize CEQA Documents - County Planning Commission Failed to Include Project-Related...

Overview: The California Court of Appeal recently held that the state’s open meeting law (the Brown Act) requires that, if a document under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) must be approved by a local...more

AB 1344 Addresses Employment Contracts, Open Meetings Notice, and Penalties for Misuse of Public Office

Assembly Bill 1344 (“AB 1344”), signed by the Governor on October 9, 2011, made several changes to laws involving local governance. The bill was introduced in response to the City of Bell controversy. The provisions of AB...more

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