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Government: Public Input at City Hearing

March 03, 1994

At a special meeting of the Charter Review Commission that was held in Redondo Beach on Feb. 5, an interesting thing happened: a complete reversal of the commission members who wanted public input into their deliberations. A citizen went to the microphone and was excluded from discussing the public's business. The city attorney, Jerry Goddard, first ruled that the citizen could speak on the matter and informed Chairman David Serena that he was wrong in his interpretation of state law. Then, in a surprise move, Goddard told the commission how to prevent the public from addressing the legislative body. Commissioner Larry Cote quickly followed (his instructions) and was seconded by Pat Dreizler. I also was not allowed to speak on this item. As a representative of a community organization who believes in open and ethical government, I was appalled at the lack of ethics and accountability that these community leaders displayed. We see now that the service we get from our elected and appointed officials who say they want more input from the public appears to be just lip service.

GREGORY ANDERSON

Redondo Beach

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