Antioch Councilman Ogorchock Alleges Brown Act Violation

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During Tuesday’s Antioch City Council meeting, Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock announced she had filed a complaint with the City Attorney that alleges a Brown Act Violation may have occurred.

The move comes after earlier in the meeting, the Council voted 3-2 to terminate its contract with City Manager Steve Duran where he will now be paid a year’s severance and benefits after announcing he would retire in August.

Ogorchock’s claim is that items from closed session ended up in multiple local media publications and before members of the community.

Ogorchock could not provide details, as the matter is now under investigation, but indicated the situation needed to be investigated.

“I feel that closed door items were leaked out to the public and I feel it’s my duty to make sure that we govern appropriately and within the law,” said Ogorchock.

Ogorchock did not say who she filed the complaint against, but indicated she believed a serial meeting may have occurred between members of the council which would be a Brown Act Violation for potentially becoming a serial meeting.

The Brown Act was created to prevent secret meetings by government officials and ensure that all deliberations by government entities are done in public.

A “serial meeting” is a series of private meetings that allow a majority of an elected body to commit to a decision or engage in deliberation of public business without the public being present. For example, two council members speak on an item, a third council member is also brought into the discussion.

According to Ogorchock, the city attorney will now investigate if a serial meeting occurred. She declined to comment further on specifics citing the matter was now under investigation.

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