Protecting Your Right To Know
The right to know what the government is doing is integral to our democracy
Observers are the eyes and ears of the League. In addition, an observer’s presence at meetings demonstrates a citizen’s desire to be an informed and active participant in local government. League observers build good public relations as visible examples of citizens seeking to understand public policy issues, and the workings of our elected or appointed boards, commissions, and councils.
OBSERVER REPORT PURPOSE
- Observing government in action makes a statement that the community is watching the process of governing. The League observer is the representative of the public at these meetings.
- Observing public meetings allows League volunteers to watch for issues on which the League has taken a position or has an interest. If an item that is being discussed is related to one of LWV’s positions, the observer’s report will alert the Board to the possibility the League should speak out or take action on the issue.
- Observers watch the general operations of public meetings. What issues are being discussed and how is the meeting being conducted? Does the Board, Council, or Commission comply with the open meeting laws?
RESOURCES FOR OBSERVERS
- Observing Your Government in Action
- Guidelines for Observers
- Observer Corps Report Form (this is a WORD document which will auto download to Google Docs; save with appropriate name before editing)
- Requesting Copies of Public Records (Ballotpedia – overview)
- Open Public Meeting Act (OPMA) – the skinny
- Take the OPMA Training (elected and appointed officials do, so should you!)
WANT TO VOLUNTEER?
The League does not currently have enough volunteers to cover all the meetings held in Kittitas County. If you are interested in becoming a League observer (and you don’t have to be a member to an observer), please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.