Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kingston Area Public Access Meeting Notes and Commentary Part 1... Sunshine... Leslie Gore... You Tube

["Sunshine Laws 2009"; as submitted to You Tube by OhioAttorneyGeneral on March 12, 2009;]

Due to time considerations (I still have one completed interview to post - and another pending) the Kingston Area Public Access (KAPA) Meeting Notes will be published (along with my commentary, which will be provided in brackets) in sections. I am not the groups secretary; and it would appear, at this time, that no one is officially taking down (in writing) meeting notes - so this is my (facts intact, but with personal views attached) contribution.

Individuals Present at the June 23, 2009 KAPA Commission Meeting:

KAPA Commissioners Present:

Bob Smith, Temporary Chair and Commissioner
Shelly Zimbler, Commissioner
Joe Marchetti, Commissioner
Geri Breen, Commissioner
Mercedes Ross, Commissioner

[It was relayed, at the meeting that Mayor Sottile had appointed another KAPA (Representing the City of Kingston) Commissioner, Henry Ellenbogen (sp?); Mr. Ellenbogen was not present at the KAPA meeting)]

[With this addition, KAPA has a total of six active Commissioners, with what appears to be five (Is this correct?) open Commission slots - reflecting one opening each in the Town of Kingston, Town of Hurley, Town of Marbletown, Town of Rosendale and the Town of Ulster]

Friends of Public Access (FOPA) Members Present:

Colin Evans, FOPA Director, Former KAPA Commissioner
Lisa Alt, FOPA Chairperson, Former KAPA Chairperson and Commissioner
Tim Morrison, FOPA Board Member, Former KAPA Commissioner

[This represents the entire FOPA Board, which alternately describes itself as a private enterprise - best run on "business" principals - as a non-for-profit incorporated entity - and as a public entity.]

Other Individuals Present:

Theresa Washington [City of Kingston resident that has expressed a desire to be on the Commission]

Ron M (sp?) [Former KAPA Commissioner]

Chris ---------- [Interested in getting involved in KAPA / Production Background]

Art Richters: Single Payer / Universal Health Care Advocate and Community Activist that previously had a very informative show on KAPA]

Clark Richter: Community Activist, Former KAPA Producer; Regular KAPA Commission Meeting Attendee; Fellow Blogger [Please see the associated video and write up on the "The Kingston News Blog" - "Friends of Public Access (FOPA), Kingston Area Public Access (KAPA) at Odds Over Funding on this event"; ]

Myself (Nancy Smith, Concerned City of Kingston Citizen; Attendee at Numerous KAPA Meetings and City of Kingston Meetings; Community Activist; Blogger]

[Please forgive me if I missed anyone or misspelled any names; if there are corrections to be made please let me know!]


First Item on the Agenda: Open Speaking...

1. I read my prepared document (see threads below) and gave a copy to the KAPA Commissioners, FOPA Board Members and other individuals in attendance.

2. Lisa Alt [FOPA] contested the idea of a quorum change and/or change in bylaws regarding a quorum change - based (allegedly) on State and/or Federal Laws regarding same... [Ms. Alt would not provide a direct answer, however, as to who wrote / approved the current quorum rules or bylaws - she would only state, generically, the "Commission."]

3. Tim Morrison [FOPA] also contested the idea of a quorum change and/or a change in the bylaws regarding a quorum change - based (allegedly) on State and/or Federal laws regarding same. [Tim Morrison later (still in the meeting context) advised me (us?) to look up the "General Construction Law" - which he says dictates KAPA and/or FOPA rules regarding Bylaws and/or Quorums... I did so, and after wading through a number (ahem) of how to construct buildings and such laws... came across this:



"§41. Quorum and majority

Whenever three or more public officers are given any power or authority, or three or more persons are charged with any public duty to be performed or exercised by them jointly or as a board or similar body, a majority of the whole number of such persons or officers, at a meeting duly held at a time fixed by law, or by any by-law duly adopted by such board or body, or at any duly adjourned meeting of such meeting, or at any meeting duly held upon reasonable notice to all of them, shall constitute a quorum and not less than a majority of the whole number may perform and exercise such power, authority or duty. For the purpose of this provision the words “whole number” shall be construed to mean the total number which the board, commission, body or other group of persons or officers would have were there no vacancies and were none of the persons or officers disqualified from acting. As amended L.1948, c.320, eff. March 21, 1948. "

Added by Me / NS - Source: [doc] GENERAL CONSTRUCTION LAW
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION LAW. §41. Quorum and majority. Whenever three or more
public officers are given any power or authority, or three or more persons are... – Similar pages
Bold Print Mine


That said [If KAPA and/or FOPA are subject to the provisions noted above - it would appear to be a bit (61 years) out-dated...] --- Temporary Chairperson, Bob Smith noted that even with all of the Commissioners present at the meeting (barring the new appointee) - KAPA - under current reputed KAPA Bylaw and Quorum requirement restraints - could (This is with all current appointees present! See the problem here!) NOT claim a quorum, hold votes on any pertinent matters or move forward on any substantial motions!


There was reputedly no quorum at the last meeting either (and this appears to be the norm...) - which explains, in part, why very little appears to get accomplished at KAPA Commission meetings! [Bringing the potential issue of a needed revision of the KAPA bylaws and/or quorum requirements - as was put forth on Commissioner Bob Smiths' Agenda and on the paper I turned in (copy below) - as well.]


With that, I will end for now (There are more notes to cover) - except to state that I just received a call from U.C. Executive Michael Heins office - and that I will be following up on this issue from various (research / contacts / etc.) angles.

This is, primarily, a City of Kingston (also involving the other municipalities involved in KAPA) issue. However, it may be that Legislative changes [regarding, at the very least, this outdated and apparently - for KAPA purposes - law] might be called for.

Stay tuned...

There is also the issue as to:

1. Whether or not FOPA has the right (as they claim) to dictate duties to KAPA Commissioners and handle all KAPA monies...

2. The question as to who signed a contract between KAPA and FOPA? (Is there a signed contract? None of the current KAPA Commissioners have apparently even seen such a contract as of last night...) between KAPA and FOPA?

3. Is FOPA (which appears - in my opinion, and echoed by others - to evade any direct questions - and does not provide copies of contracts, receipts, etc. to KAPA...) helping or hurting the stated goals of KAPA?

4. Where does this go from here? [Input, suggestions, legal advisers, folks associated with other Public Access stations, etc. are more than welcome to comment!]


Just for fun...

["Lesley Gore - Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows (Re-make)"; as submitted to You Tube by Snookiebutt
August 30, 2008;]

Thank You,


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