Monday, November 5, 2007

Bill Dunn Proposes Online Discussion for Open Meetings Law

See http://www.shoppernewsnow.com/aBean.aspx (link is time-limited).

Dunn thinks he may have a way to bring the state’s sunshine law into the 21st century, via the Internet. Dunn is working on a bill that would allow elected bodies to set up Web sites where they openly discuss issues. These sites would be open to the public and the media.

“Two elected officials could carry on a conversation at their convenience and at the spur of the moment if needed, knowing that the public will have full access to their discussion,” said Dunn.

It's a little different, but along the line of what I've proposed for an online diary of ALL meetings. Even this version would eliminate the complaint that "it's too hard" that seems to be behind the hamstringing of the Open Meetings law.

8 comments:

Whatmeworry? said...

YOUR idea? My,aren't we the arrogant one?Funny,he didn't mention you in the article.Maybe you should sue since he stole your thunder.Just because he may be looking into something that every half way intelligent person in Knox county wants has absolutely nothing to do with you.Cheap tactic.-10 points for this one.Let's not insult the intelligence of the masses.

Steve said...

I'm not sure why you continue to (purposely?) misinterpret me and put words in my mouth (and then go on the attack).

If all you wish to do is snipe and make relatively baseless complaints, there are other blogs that I'm sure have a wider audience than mine.

I didn't say Dunn stole my idea, and I didn't even imply that he knew about my idea. Two creatively minded people came up with similar ideas. Either you think it's a good idea (and you should applaud it), or you don't (and you should criticize the idea itself). Your comments continue to address the messenger, not the message.

And if I understand your statement about "what every person in Knox County wants" (see, I qualify that in case I have misinterpreted you), then I would disagree that most people in Knox County have thought about open government to this extent- that Commissioners should identify EVERYONE that they talk to about County business. I haven't heard any other similar proposals on KNS, Knoxviews, Commission meetings, other blogs, etc.

Everyone wants 'open government', but up until now, people have only been thinking in terms of Commissioner-Commissioner conversations, which misses a lot of what really influences KCC.

Perhaps the topic doesn't interest you as much as the personalities. If you need things to attack me with, e-mail me and I'll be happy to discuss my shortcomings as a human being. But that's not what this site or this campaign is about.

Better yet, come to the "meet the candidate" party November 15th and get to know me as a person (or talk to people there who have known me for years). I'd dare say I don't think a single person I know would think of me as arrogant at all. But ask them / come and make your own conclusion. I'd love to have you there.

whatmeworry? said...

Dunn likes my idea.How else is it to be interpreted?You are way too sensitive if what I say offends you.I have no idea if you have shortcomings or not,and that's none of my business anyway.I am simply telling you how you appear.I'm not attacking your character or beliefs.But it is what it is.You say my comments are baseless and I'm sniping at you.O.k.--that's your opinion.I stand for what I say as an opinion as well.No difference.Politics gets personal.You need a thick skin as well as a platform.Bon chance!

Anonymous said...

O.K., let's reword the title for my original intent. Yes, it could be taken the wrong way. I'll do that tonight once I get on a normal connecttion.

I'm still curious though- what do you think about the idea itself? should it be changed or limited in any way. Let's say I get elected, can't get the idea passed into law, but agree to abide by it myslef (and encourage others to do the same voluntarily). Then a fellow commissioner approaches me and says he wants to talk about Issue X but only if I agree not to post to the diary. his support could mean some beneficial reform benefitting the citizens. Would it be OK in that case to just have an entry that I talked to a John Doe about Issue X?

certainly you have some thoughts about how this might work....

whatmeworry? said...

Should this idea fail to be adopted by law for some reason,you are right on to do the "voluntary" thing.In fact,it might be easier to go this route than to try to get everyone to agree,(you've been to commission meetings,right?).If one goes on record as voluntarily submitting documentation of a per chance meeting with dialogue regarding a commission matter,the onus is put squarely on the shoulders of the others to do likewise lest they be judged as unscrupulous.Remember the K.I.S.S. method I referred to earlier in a post? More than one way to skin a cat.Better living through psychology.

Steve said...

True, true.

I reworded the title and added a closing sentance that more appropriately matches my intent. Thanks for your words of support of "going it alone if need be." Sometimes that's what it takes for ideas to catch on.

Whatmeworry? said...

Good morning...I was thinking (dangerous?)if you're planning on putting out signs I have a couple of suggestions you may find helpful.One,I personally think it's a little early to put them out right now.By Feb. folks will be sick of them.By waiting a bit you can add a fresh name and it is more likely to stand out.Also,if you haven't already,try and be creative with your sign.One of the best ones I have seen recently is for Cindy Buttry for school board.It looks like a writing tablet with a pencil beside it.Not your average run-of-the-mill sign.Lastly,a little F.Y.I. ...When you put signs in right of ways,wait until after the mowing season.Workers will sometimes pull up the signs and lay them down but sometimes they chuck 'em. By waiting,you'll save time and money by using less signage and driving all over to make sure your signs are still standing.Oh,and just one other thought...People may be hesitant to put signs in their yard if they plan on decorating for the holidays.So you might want to wait until after Christmas to approach folks or ask them now if they will put one up after the Holidays.Have a good one...we'll talk again soon.

Steve said...

Hey- thanks! I'll check out Cindy's design. I also figured out in previous years one trick to prevent signs from being pulled by more nefarious types- smear a chunk of petroleum jelly on the top. After two or three, the casual sign-puller might decide he has more important hobbies.