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Governor suspends serial meetings prohibition in state’s open meeting laws

Governor suspends serial meetings prohibition in state’s open meeting laws

Gov. Gavin Newsom issued another executive order that temporarily suspends the serial meeting prohibitions in the Brown Act and Bagley-Keene Act.

Existing law (Government code section 54952.2 (b)(1) and Government code section 11122.5 (b)(1)) prohibits a majority of the members of a local legislative body or state a board from having a series of communications of any kind to discuss, deliberate, or take action on any item of before that legislative body.

Under the Governor’s Executive Order, members of local and state bodies may have serial communications with a majority of its members and members of the federal, state, and local governments to receive updates, ask questions, and be appraised of emergency operations about the State of Emergency and COVID-19. The executive order specifically states that these serial communications are not prohibited under section (b)(1) and not meetings and therefore, are not subject to the Brown and Bagley-Keene Acts.

However, the order expressly states that the local and state legislative bodies are prohibited from taking any action that would be subject to the other requirements of the Brown and Bagley-Keene Acts.