MOA and Alaskans For Open Meetings, Inc. Mutually Agree to Resolve Case

Mayor's Office

4/15/2022

Anchorage, AK ­– Alaskans for Open Meetings, Inc. (AFOM) and the Municipality of Anchorage (MOA) have mutually agreed to resolve all pending claims in Case No. 3AN-20-08822CI.

Mayor Dave Bronson and AFOM, together, agree that:

A.        Alaska's Open Meetings Law provides that “All meetings of a governmental body of a public entity of the state are open to the public except as otherwise provided by this section or another provision of law. Attendance and participation at meetings by members of the public or by members of a governmental body may be by teleconferencing."

B.        Municipal Charter likewise requires that “All meetings of the assembly, school board, and other boards and commissions shall be public," and that “[a]t each such meeting the public shall have reasonable opportunity to be heard."

C.        Equal protection under the law is guaranteed under the Municipal Charter,  Alaska Constitution,  and U.S. Constitution.

D.        Per Alaska's Open Meetings Law, it is the policy of the State of Alaska that Alaskans do not yield their sovereignty to agencies, that Alaskans do not give public servants the right to decide what is good – or is not good – for Alaskans to know, and that Alaskans' right to remain informed shall be protected.

E.        Alaskans possess rights to petition and to assemble peaceably under the Municipal Charter,  Alaska constitution,  and U.S. constitution.

F.         The administration already took a step toward liberalizing open meeting attendance through ordinance AO No. 2021-85 (Oct. 28, 2021).

G.        The administration's policy is to ensure Alaska law will be followed regarding Open Meetings and in-person attendance for members of the public, subject to reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions and privileges recognized under law.

Mayor Dave Bronson and AFOM issued the following joint statement:

“We are happy with this settlement as it is the result of good faith negotiations between both parties. Alaska has had open meetings laws on its books since the beginning of statehood. State law expresses a strong policy in favor of opening governmental meetings to the public."

AFOM's Frank McQueary issued the following statement:

"Alaskans for Open Meetings was formed to ensure that all Alaskans enjoy the rights and privileges provided under our state law and constitution for maximum participation in the public process. As part of this agreement, AFOM will have an opportunity to provide input to the Municipality to improve public involvement and transparency in government functions." 

​Media Contact: Patrick Bergt, Municipal Attorney, patrick.bergt@anchorageak.gov,  907-343-4545

                           Corey Allen Young, Communications Director, Mayor's Office, corey.young@anchorageak.gov, 907-229-4150

 

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