The Norman Transcript

Headlines

March 15, 2013

City memo may have violated open meetings law

NORMAN — A memorandum drafted by the city attorney on behalf of Mayor Cindy Rosenthal was hand delivered to members of the city council recently.

The memo — dated Feb. 19 — summarizes the history of decisions concerning the city manager’s contract and compensation and summarizes a consensus of the council regarding the city manager’s contract. It presented new information regarding union and non-union compensation and closes with a request from the mayor for input and direction from other council members.

Some open government observers say that request from the mayor appears to be a violation of the Oklahoma Open Meetings Act.

Council member Tom Kovach alerted The Transcript to the existence of the memo earlier this week, commenting that it was Sunshine Week and he believes the mayor’s memo violates open meetings law. Rosenthal disagrees.

“My sole motive in consulting with the city attorney is to get it right. He has to draft the contract, obviously, so I have to work closely with him,” Rosenthal said.

The Transcript asked for a copy of the memo and Rosenthal referred the matter to the city attorney who refused all requests. The Transcript obtained a copy of the memo from a source who does not believe it falls into the category of privileged information.

The memo is addressed from Rosenthal to council members.

“The consensus of the council was to move forward ...” Rosenthal writes in the memo.

“They cannot vote in executive session,” said Dr. Joey Senat, associate a professor at the OSU School of Media and Strategic Communications. “So how did they reach a consensus? They avoided having a roll call vote, but they still voted.”

“I was asked to put on paper what did it mean to follow the same union and non-union pay raises,” Rosenthal said. “And I consulted with the city attorney to help draft that, but no final decision was made, no votes were cast.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Water carry 5 Water Walk opens discussion about difficulties in obtaining safe H2O

    With large white plastic buckets upon their heads, two gallons of water sloshed to the brim and over the side, but the students trudged on down the South Oval. The farthest feat was to the Seed Sower, and as the sun glared down, heat ...

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Council OKs $48.8M contract for wastewater plant upgrades

    The Norman City Council awarded a $48.8 million project for wastewater treatment plant upgrades Tuesday. The council accepted a $50.3 million low-interest loan from the Clean Water State Revolving Fund....

    April 23, 2014

  • Transportation officials find more cracks in Lexington-Purcell bridge, but repairs on track

    State transportation officials announced Tuesday that additional repairs are needed in at least 96 places on the Lexington-Purcell bridge before it can be opened....

    April 23, 2014

  • Stacy Ford named 2014 Norman schools Teacher of the Year during banquet

    Stacy Ford, Kennedy Elementary librarian, was named 2014 Norman Public Schools Teacher of the Year at the district’s annual Celebration of Excellence banquet Tuesday evening at the National Center for Employee Development....

    April 23, 2014

  • Okla. House defeats bond issue to repair Capitol

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma House has defeated legislation that would authorize up to $160 million in bonds to repair the state’s nearly 100-year-old Capitol....

    April 23, 2014

  • Fallin signs bill for Okla. trooper raises

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Gov. Mary Fallin has signed a bill that would give Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers their first pay raise in seven years, although the pay increase won’t come unless money is included in a separate budget proposal....

    April 23, 2014

  • At mudslide scene, Obama mourns with survivors

    OSO, Wash. — Swooping over a landscape of unspeakable sadness and death, President Barack Obama took an aerial tour Tuesday of the place where more than three dozen people perished in a mudslide last month. He pledged a nation’s solidarity ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Blood drive planned Thursday

    Moore Norman Technology Center, 4701 12th Ave. NW in Norman, will host an Oklahoma Blood Institute public blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Thursday inside room A109 in the main building of MNTC’s Franklin Road campus.  The OBI is in ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Local student to attend arts camp

    Kate Kemmet, 15, of Norman, has been accepted and will attend Interlochen Arts Camp. Kemmet, the daughter of Rob and Lori Kemmet, will study musical theater at the Camp....

    April 23, 2014

  • Coalition seeks more jobs

    A coalition of groups that encourage employment of residents who have disabilities hopes to double the number of placed workers by next fall....

    April 23, 2014