Friday, May 15, 2020

Special-Called Meeting - Tues., May 19. 5:00PM, Zoom?

The District has announced a Special-Called Board Meeting for Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 5:00P.M.

The purpose of the meeting is FY 20-21 General Fund Budget Update.

Budget Updates have traditionally been preceded by a period of public participation. The Board nixed the entire public participation aspect of board meetings earlier this week. And the Agenda for the meeting provides no means for the public to provide input about the budget for the next school year.

At Tuesday's Board meeting this week Trustee Lindsay Agostini mentioned that the City of Columbia City Council  provides a public access portal. Why can't Richland 2 do the same?

READ HERE how the City of Columbia accommodates the public. "You may also register at this site to post comments about items on the agenda. Comments posted about specific agenda items prior to 2:00 p.m. will be read during the Public Comment segment of the meeting."

WHAT? They will read comments from the public AT the public meeting? Really?

If the Richland 2 School Board was really interested in the opinion of members of the public, it would do this. But it doesn't. Trustee Agostini would favor this, I'll bet. So would Trustee Elkins-Johnson. The rest of them? Probably not.

According to the Agenda, the meeting will be held "Electronically via Zoom".

If you were lucky enough to see the Press Release by the District, you would know that the meeting will not be on Zoom. It will be broadcast on

State law requires the District to publish the location of the meeting. If it is to be broadcast only on the internet, then the URL for the meeting should be shown on the agenda.

I can't figure out what part of that is so difficult for someone at Richland 2 to understand. I mean, these are people with degree and certificates and PhD's and (you name it). Does no one think to ask, "How will the public find this meeting?"

As of right now (5/15/20, 6:35PM, there is no message on the District's homepage that provides the location of the meeting. Maybe that will change on Monday. Maybe not. Anyone looking at the Agenda, where the location is supposed to be shown, will be out-of-luck.