Durango school board admits to breaking Open Meetings law | SummitDaily.com

Durango school board admits to breaking Open Meetings law

DURANGO – The Durango school board acknowledged it broke the Colorado Open Meetings law when it used secret ballots to choose a new member.The board’s attorney said Monday the appointment of Tammy Capdevielle had been nullified. The board was expected to make another appointment Wednesday.The board reversed the April 30 vote for Capdevielle after it was contested by the Durango Herald. An attorney for the newspaper cited a provision of the open meeting law that says formal actions by public bodies must be done in “public meetings open to the public at all times.”Board president Floyd Patterson took responsibility for the violation.”I really erred there,” he told the Herald in Tuesday’s editions. “It wasn’t a subtle mistake. We’re not going to look like the best, but we’ve got to assume responsibility.”Darryl Farrington, the board’s attorney, said none of Capdevielle’s votes determined the outcome of any motions while she was on the board.Capdevielle had been appointed to replace Mike Matheson, who resigned.Board members wrote their votes on paper and handed their ballots to Patterson. Patterson announced Capdevielle was the choice but said the decision was not unanimous.The board then appointed Capdevielle by unanimous voice vote.Darryl Farrington, the board’s attorney, said members used secret ballots because “it would be more tactful and perhaps avoid any personal feelings.”He said the board will disclose Wednesday how each member had voted.Capdevielle said she hopes to be chosen again for the board and plans to run for the seat when it comes up for election in November.”I’m enjoying being on the board,” she said. —Information from: Durango Herald, http://www.durangoherald.com

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