JoCo DA Steve Howe to speak to Press Club on Open Meetings

The Kansas City Press Club’s next event features Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe, who’s been on a crusade to get local governments to better understand the Open Meetings Act. The event is this Saturday at the Cedar Roe Library.

Confusion among government officials about what constitutes an open meeting has been pervasive in Kansas this year.

It began with a series of dinners Gov. Sam Brownback hosted for Republican state legislators. Shawnee County District Attorney Chad Taylor noted violations did occur, though they were not “significant,” and Brownback and the legislators were not officially cited for any wrongdoing.

In 2012, local governments in Mission and Gardner have been cited for violating the state’s Open Meetings Act, and Shawnee is under investigation for barring the public from open meetings.

Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe has been at the forefront of a charge to bring more transparency to government business, and recently led a training session that included more than 80 elected and unelected officials. Bottom line: government bodies in Kansas need to know more about the law so that the public can know more about the government.

Howe is the featured speaker of the Kansas City Press Club’s November event, taking place Saturday, Nov. 10, at 10:30 a.m., at the Cedar Roe Library’s meeting room, 5120 Cedar St., in Roeland Park.

The event is free and open to the public.

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