These are a few clips from Sharyn Romano’s report to the Hollywood Media District BID Board of Directors on October 23, 2014. The entire meeting is available here if you have the heart for it. Continue reading Clips from Sharyn Romano’s Hollywood Beautification Team Report on October 23, 2014
The Brown Act is the California law governing public meetings. It’s serious business. § 54959 states that
Each member of a legislative body who attends a meeting of that legislative body where action is taken in violation of any provision of this chapter, and where the member intends to deprive the public of information to which the member knows or has reason to know the public is entitled under this chapter, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
Now, that intent element is a little sticky. Evidently it’s not a crime “to deprive the public of information” if you’re just ignorant of the law or too arrogant to understand that the law applies to you or whatever. But at least some members of some groups subject to the Brown Act must be guilty of a misdemeanor when, e.g., they explicitly deny members of the public access to documents which the Brown Act states explicitly must be made available to the public “immediately.” When a member of a body subject to the Brown Act says “no, you can’t look at the document,” the intent is clear. The member “has reason to know” the law because it’s their job to know the law, them being a member of a Brown-Act body. Bang! Misdemeanor. Then how does the law get enforced in such a case?
The procedure is laid out in the Act itself (§54960 et seq.). Either the DA or a member of the public can go to court and ask for injunctive relief of various kinds or else “any interested party” can write a letter to the criminals, point out their crime, give them 30 days to think about it, and allow them the option of promising never to do the crime in the future albeit without admitting that they actually did it in the past. As far as we can see, no one has ever gone to jail for violating the Brown Act (although see this story about a guy in Illinois who placed a whole county board of supervisors under citizen’s arrest).
Continue reading How to Enforce the Law
Hello world! We have a YouTube channel and we know how to use it! Look there for the latest video news about the three Hollywood area BIDs. Our inaugural video is a mind-numbingly boring 48 minute slab of beef showing today’s meeting of the Sunset-Vine BID Board of Directors at the Mary Pickford Center of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Vine Street. Watch the whole thing at your peril. We’ll be commenting on a few choice clips as we have time. You can watch the video embedded after the break if you prefer…
Continue reading Our brand new YouTube channel
Here’s a video, taken by a correspondent of ours on Friday, October 3, 2014:
He wrote to Captain John Irigoyen of Universal Protective Services, which the Hollywood Media District BID pays to run its safety patrol, asking for their names. Irigoyen asked why our correspondent was asking, and got the following response:
Continue reading Hollywood BID safety patrol guys hassle a harmless man on the street