Effingham County panel accused of open meetings violation
The Edgar County Watchdogs (ECW) have asked the Illinois Attorney General Public Access Office to look into possible Open Meeting Act (OMA) violations by the Effiingham County Insurance Committee after members from the ECW went to an unpublicized meeting recently, the group reports on its Illinois Leaks website.
The ECW says it got word of the meeting even though no announcements were posted on the county website, in the county building or at the meeting location.
Panel Chairman Karen Luchtefeld and committee member Jeff Simpson denied that a meeting was taking place, despite papers scattered across a table in a private back room and Luchtefeld saying they were there to “do some work,” the ECW contends.
Two members of a three-person committee being in a room constitutes a quorum, and no business should have been discussed without proper notice to the public, the group argues.
"We waited several minutes then went out in the hall and discovered the main office was now locked and lights were off, which is the only other access to the Private room," the ECW posted. "The committee members appeared to have simply slipped out the back way without providing the members of the public any information or telling us that they were canceling the meeting that they began behind closed doors."