DIXON – The Dixon City Council will vote Monday to keep private the minutes from a meeting on the day in 2012 when then-Comptroller Rita Crundwell was arrested at City Hall.
The vote will take place during the City Council’s regular meeting on Monday. The council has been reviewing minutes since January and has met in closed session three times to discuss whether to release them.
Under the Open Meetings Act, the city is required to review minutes of closed sessions twice a year to determine whether the need for secrecy still exists. Council members can vote to release the minutes if they no longer see the need for confidentiality.
Public bodies are permitted to have a closed session to discuss a variety of issues, including litigation and employment decisions, among others.
The City Council has scheduled a closed meeting during its regular session Monday night, according to the agenda. That executive session will be devoted to “deliberations concerning salary schedules for one or more classes of municipal employees.”
In September, the City Council released minutes from six closed sessions, but kept minutes from 16 others secret, citing pending litigation and personnel matters.
On Sept. 25, the city announced it had reached a $40 million out-of-court settlement with its former auditors and Fifth Third Bank.
On Monday, the City Council will vote on two agenda items relating to the closed session minutes it has been reviewing.
The first is to release minutes from four closed session meetings – July 2, 2012; Aug. 6, 2012; July 15, 2013; and Sept. 3, 2013.
The minutes from the July 15, 2013, and Sept. 3, 2013, meetings could be released in their entirety.
Other minutes are on the agenda to be partially released.
Commissioner Jeff Kuhn said that parts of the minutes relating to confidential material won’t be released.
The other agenda item referring to the closed session minutes is a motion to not release minutes from 20 closed meetings, including one on April 17, 2012, the day Crundwell was arrested for stealing nearly $54 million from the city during 2 decades as comptroller.
Those minutes aren’t being released, according to the agenda, because there still is a need for confidentiality.
Mayor Jim Burke said he couldn’t speak to what specifically qualified some of the minutes as confidential.
“As far as the confidential ones, that kind of speaks for itself,” he said. “We have consulted with the attorneys who were there [when the minutes were reviewed]. ... We have been advised that those minutes need to remain confidential.”
The released minutes are more general, Kuhn said.
“The ones that we felt needed to be not released were ones relating to confidential material,” Kuhn said. “They were the type that should not be released.”
Commissioner Dennis Considine said the City Council was advised not to release the minutes, but said his personal opinion was they could eventually be made public.
Colleen Brechon declined to comment.
Commissioner Dave Blackburn didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Open, closed; what will be released
The Dixon City Council is expected to vote Monday to release minutes from the following closed session meetings:
• July 2, 2012
• Aug. 6, 2012
• July 15, 2013
• Sept. 3, 2013
The City Council will vote to not release minutes from the following closed meetings:
• Dec. 5, 2011
• April 16, 2012
• April 17, 2012
• May 7, 2012
• May 14, 2012
• May 21, 2012
• July 2, 2012
• July 16, 2012
• Aug. 6, 2012
• Sept. 4, 2012
• Oct. 1, 2012
• Nov. 19, 2012
• April 8, 2013
• April 11, 2013
• April 15, 2013
• May 6, 2013
• Sept. 25, 2013
• Oct. 15, 2013
• Oct. 24, 2013
• Dec. 16, 2013
The Dixon City Council will meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday at City Hall, 121 W. Second St., on the second floor in the Council Chambers.
Go to www.DiscoverDixon.org or call City Hall at 815-288-1485 for an agenda or more information.