Nothing to hide

Why should you care if your elected officials are holding closed-door meetings?

Public business must be conducted in public.

That is the law.

In recent months, questionable executive sessions have resulted in individuals expressing strong concerns regarding actions of both the Town of Pagosa Springs and Archuleta County.

Executive sessions are acceptable when they are necessary, but restrictions have been put in place to make sure that the public’s interests are protected.

Executive sessions are legally limited to matters and records that must be kept confidential. Public bodies are also allowed to use executive sessions to determine positions on matters that may be subject to negotiation.

At the Sept. 17 meeting of the Pagosa Springs Town Council, an executive session was held for the stated reason of “Revision to Springs Partners 10-Year Vested Right Agreement Pursuant to C.R.S. Section 24-6-402(4)(e) Determining Positions Relative to Matters that may be Subject to Negotiations, Developing Strategy for Negotiations, and Instructing Negotiators.”

Matt Mees and Bill Dawson, of Springs Partners, were included in the town’s closed-door session on Sept. 17.

We ask why private individuals with whom the town was negotiating were allowed to attend the executive session?

In negotiating, you typically keep information from the party with whom you are negotiating. Why did the town feel it was necessary to keep information secret from the public if it was willing to share that information with the other party?

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This story was posted on December 3, 2015.