Images-26 OPEN MEETINGS -- The Porterville City Council broke the law last week when it voted to
bail out the Exchange Club’s Fourth of July fireworks show with a
$13,000 infusion of cash without alluding to such action on the agenda, a Sacramento-based media lawyer told the Porterville Recorder, the newspaper reported yesterday.

Jim Ewert, legal counsel for the California Newspaper Publishers
Association, said there’s no question about it: Council members ran
afoul of the state’s open meetings law, the Ralph M. Brown Act, on
April 7. City officials disagree.

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The April 7 City Council agenda included an item titled “Council
Member Request — Status of Exchange Club of Porterville’s Annual Fourth
of July Community Fireworks Show.” The three-sentence staff report
offered a brief history of the show and noted the cancelation.

No staff recommendations were made.