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DHS board might benefit from attorney general's seminars

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: September 28, 2011

DeVaughn's testimony in a lawsuit filed against DHS by an out-of-state advocacy group indicated the Open Meeting Act could be a hassle. He said various committees within the commission are kept to four members, because five would require having to comply with the act. Those committees sometimes meet with fairly short notice “and to conform to the Open Meeting Act, it would be a pretty onerous task,” he said.

On Sunday, The Oklahoman reported that the commission never voted publicly in 2008 to approve the hiring of outside attorneys to represent DHS in the lawsuit, and that agenda items at the time didn't mention such discussions would take place regarding that issue. General counsel Charles Waters says no laws were broken, and that commission OK isn't needed to hire outside attorneys.

That may indeed be the case. But the pattern isn't encouraging.

The attorney general's seminars about open meetings and open records began Monday in Ardmore. Others are planned in Muskogee, Woodward, Tulsa and Lawton. Note to the Human Services Commission: The seminar in Oklahoma City is Nov. 7 at Metro Technology Center, 1900 Springlake Drive. It starts at 1 p.m.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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