More open meetings is great present

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Nearly lost in the hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving last week was a key victory for Natchez citizens.

The Natchez Board of Aldermen voted to shed a little more light on their long-standing practice of holding finance sessions in a separate room, largely out of the sight of the public.

Ward 6 Alderman Dan Dillard made the motion, and provided a lucid explanation to support it, to have the board’s finance meetings in the main meeting room, allowing audio recordings to be made.

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Previously, no audio recordings were made of past finance meetings, which from time to time, has caused disagreements over what was discussed by whom and when.

Having a more permanent record should eliminate that challenge going forward.

We have long been advocates of the public’s right to know what the city’s leadership is doing — at every juncture of the public policy and procedure.

We have been huge critics, at times, of the city’s lack of transparency in the past. So we were delighted to read the city’s plans to move one step closer to transparent local government.

That’s an excellent Christmas present for all Natchez citizens.