On June 1, 2017, Attorney Christa Westerberg won an important ruling in an open meetings case brought against the Governor-appointed Wisconsin Natural Resources Board. The circuit court ruled that the board broke state law by discussing the public’s business during a private meeting on January 26th of 2016.
Steven Verburg of the Wisconsin State Journal reports:
The violation [of the open meetings law] occurred [ … ] [at a private dinner] the night before the board approved a controversial state Department of Natural Resources plan to allow snowmobiles in a state park known for silent sports such as cross-country skiing.
[ … ] Dane County Circuit Judge John Markson placed responsibility on DNR managers whose emails revealed their plans to use the dinner meeting to defuse any objections board members had in the face of strong public opposition to the Blue Mounds State Park master plan.
While there may be no evidence in this record of collusion on the part of board members to achieve a specific outcome, there is clear evidence of DNR staff’s intent, action, and motivation to reach board members outside of noticed public settings.
To read the article in full, click on the following hyperlink.