Updated 09/19/2012 10:27 PM
Questions answered at Utica Common Council’s open forum
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UTICA, N.Y. -- Robert Freeman of New York State's Committee on Open Government addressed concerns and questions regarding the Utica Common Council Wednesday night.
Topics surrounding the Freedom of Information Law, also known as FOIL, and the Open Meetings Law were discussed during a public forum. The most highlighted topic was the censure of Councilman Frank Vescera, which occurred last board meeting after he failed to follow the board's rules regarding the use of his portable video camera. The board asked him to keep his camera in the designated area and he refused.
Freeman said Wednesday that the issue was lunacy and they were making mole hills into mountains.
"My hope is that there will be greater respect for one another, greater respect for the law, greater respect for the rules and I hope that this presentation has enhanced the ability and the opportunity to get along," Freeman said.
Freeman says he believes the biggest problem with Utica's Common Council is a lack of communication and the inability to solve problems in a productive manner. He says he hopes this forum was the key to steering them in the right direction.