City Council releases closed meeting minutes

Cassie Buchman, City Editor

The Charleston City Council voted to release minutes from certain closed meetings and to destroy audio and visual recordings of closed meetings from the last 18 months during its meeting Tuesday.

According to the Illinois Open Meetings Act, all public governmental bodies are required to keep written minutes of their meetings. This is required of both open and closed meetings.

As long as the public body decides they no longer need to keep the information confidential or protect the privacy of an individual, portions or all of the minutes need to be released.

The act also requires all governmental public bodies to record their closed meetings either with video or audio.

Mayor Larry Rennels said the city council discuss what can be released and what should be kept confidential every six months.

“We see which ones need to be kept confidential, and which ones should be released,” he said.

The council decides what needs to be destroyed 18 months after they are recording. The recordings from the meetings will be destroyed are from the dates of Jan. 2; Feb. 5; March 5; and June 4 of 2013.

All three items on the agenda were voted on and approved.

Rennels said that the short agenda of this meeting made up for the long agenda of the previous week.

The council approved a benefit being hosted by Our Hope for Others that needed a raffle license. The benefit is being held for Margaret Carpenter to help raise money to cover her last medical expenses.

The benefit will be held at Lefty’s Holler at 727 7th Street. The raffle sale will commence on Feb. 4 and will end on Feb. 28.

Set for partial release are the recordings from certain meetings from July through November of 2013 and from the entire year of 2014.

 The items were passed with no comments or arguments.

City Council meetings are the first and third Tuesday of every month.

Cassie Buchman can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].