Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Texting and Tweeting by City Council Members

During last week's Richardson city council meeting, council member Bob Macy expressed his desire to ban the use of "pagers and cell phones" during council meetings. His suggestion was met by opposition from Amir Omar and silence from the rest of the council. Not willing to admit defeat, this week, Bob Macy took another pass at the issue, explaining his interest this way:

"I took some heat about my comment about external electronic devices. In all fairness to people who like to have open records, all of our communications is open records whether it comes through whatever media it is. All of communications during council is open records so that's the point on which I'm concerned."

I ask, but don't attempt to answer, just what did Bob Macy mean by that? Why is Bob Macy concerned about his communications being subject to the Texas Open Records Act?

John Murphy didn't try to answer those questions. Instead, he simply declared, "unless you guys threaten to hang me at the nearest light pole, I'm going to continue to put my cell phone on silent but I will continue to take pages and texts and things like that throughout the meeting..." Now, that sounds like a man who isn't afraid of having his communications be subject to the Open Records Act.

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