[Sept. 17 email from LBREPORT.com] In the public interest, LBREPORT.com, an independent online news outlet now our 21st year in Long Beach, requets your office's action to correct a continuing violation of the Brown Act by the City Council's Public Safety Committee in failing to agendize a period allowing public comment on non-agendized items.
This isn't a small matter since the Public Safety Committee's action allows it to prevent the public from bringing public safety and police issues to the Committee's attention in a public manner, regardless of whether they are to the liking of Committee chair (with the power to agendize items) or its members. In this way, the Public Safety Committee has been able to maintain a grip on Council Committee level discussion of public safety and police issues in Long Beach.
On Sept. 16, 2020, the undersigned, and potentially other Long Beach residents, were prevented from signing up to offer telephonic testimony on non-agendized items at the Committee's 1 p.m. Sept. 16 meeting. At midmorning Sept. prior to the City Clerk's noon sign-up deadline, LBREPORT.com's publisher alerted your office and the City Clerk's office to this issue and sought a timely remedy by the City Clerk's noon sign-up deadline. We received no response until well after the Committee meeting was already underway and had been in progress for nearly half an hour, at which time a City Clerk staffer emailed that he would call us for our testimony. We declined the offer as untimely and unresponsive to the Brown Act issues cited in our Sept. 16 midmorning email to your office cc'd to the City Clerk. (With no agenda item accompanying her action, moment's before the Committee's adjournment chair Price invited public comment of which there was none since none had been agendized.)
CA Government Code section 54954 provides that "(a)...Meetings of advisory committees or standing committees, for which an agenda is posted at least 72 hours in advance of the meeting pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 54954.2, shall be considered for purposes of this chapter as regular meetings of the legislative body " CA Government Code section 54954.3 provides "(a) Every agenda for regular meetings shall provide an opportunity for members of the public to directly address the legislative body on any item of interest to the public..."
The agendas for the Council's Public Safety Committee meetings don't provide an opportunity for the public to address non agendized items of interest to the public. They fail to comply with the above cited requirements of the Brown Act.
LBREPORT.com respectfully requests a written response from your office indicating resolution of this matter by adding an item to future Public Safety Committee agendas inviting public comment on non-agendized items (with telephonic sign-ups accompanying said item.) Please advise and thank you.