Talking with the editor of the Jasper News today I discovered two things.
- The Jasper News COULDN’T GET the audio recording of the February meeting despite the requirement to produce the recording when asked for it. Another case of Florida Statute 119, Florida’s Public Records Law, that Tommie can’t follow the law even though he knows the law.
- No one called the Jasper News about our attempted lynching of another Council member tonight. We didn’t get three days of notice of the meeting but case law says the Press must be called prior to any meeting. As the Editor of the White Springs Journal I got notified. I’m just surprised that Helen Millers Blog, AKA the Jasper News, didn’t get a notification. Could it possibly be that Helen didn’t want the publicity of what the Council is trying to do tonight? MAYBE !!!
A vital element of the Sunshine Law is the requirement that boards subject to the law provide “reasonable notice” of all meetings. See s. 286.011(1), F.S. Even before the statutory amendment in 1995 expressly requiring notice, the courts had stated that in order for a public meeting to be in essence “public,” reasonable notice of the meeting must be given. See Hough v. Stembridge, 278 So. 2d 288, 291 (Fla. 3d DCA 1973); Yarbrough v. Young, 462 So. 2d 515, 517 (Fla. 1st DCA 1985). Reasonable public notice is required for all meetings subject to the Sunshine Law and is required even though a quorum is not present. AGO 90-56. And see Baynard v. City of Chieﬂand, Florida, No. 38-2002-CA-000789 (Fla. 8th Cir. Ct. July 8, 2003) (reasonable notice required even if subject of meeting is “relatively unimportant”). Notice is required even though meetings of the board are “of general knowledge” and are not conducted in a closed door manner. TSI Southeast, Inc. v. Royals, 588 So. 2d 309, 310 (Fla. 1st DCA 1991). “Governmental bodies who hold unnoticed meetings do so at their peril.” Monroe County v. Pigeon Key Historical Park, Inc., 647 So. 2d 857, 869 (Fla. 3d DCA 1994).