Richard T. Griffiths, spokesman for the Georgia First Amendment Foundation, said the Cobb school board has a pattern of “not getting their act together with open meetings.” He said the board and the district need to review open meetings and open records laws to understand what their responsibilities are to the public.
“The very fact that this meeting took place without the ability to know what was said or someone observing what was being said is clearly a serious open government problem,” he said.
Cobb parent Heather Tolley-Bauer said her organization, Watching the Funds - Cobb, had five people speak at Thursday’s hearing. She said it was “concerning and frustrating” that the hearing is not available to view online.
“The budget forum being made public is an important part of stakeholders being involved in the budget process, and it’s extremely important that stakeholders know what is happening and how the budget is put together,” she said.
Tolley-Bauer said she filed a complaint with the Georgia Attorney General’s Office.
“We take this seriously because this is an organization that frequently puts up barriers to participate in meetings,” she said, referring to the school board.
This isn’t the first time the Cobb school district has violated state open meeting laws. In August and September, the district did not air public comments during the live stream of its virtual meetings.