Errors In Minutes Raise Quorum Questions
July 16, 2020
The minutes produced by the Shawnee Planning Commission during their June 19 meeting contained some errors, which city officials are working to correct.
A copy of the minutes obtained by The Countywide & Sun shows Commissioner Cody Deem as being present, but did not record her participation in any votes taken at the meeting. In an audio recording of the commission meeting provided by the city, Deem can be heard both during initial roll call, and the roll call for one of the two votes taken.
The minutes in question were up for approval by the Shawnee City Commission at their last meeting, but Commissioner Ben Salter removed the minutes from the consent docket, resulting in the approval being deferred to a later date.
Shawnee's planning and development director, Rebecca Blaine, said the minutes have been updated, and would be sent back to the planning commission for approval. Once approved by the planning commission, she said the minutes would be sent back before the city commissioners for final approval.
"We had several sets of minutes to get caught up on, so it was just human error," Blaine said.
Blaine said the COVID-19 situation had caused a backlog of work for the commission. She said the discrepancy was caught before the city commission approved the minutes.
"I have someone new doing minutes as well, so we'll chalk it up to a training opportunity," Blaine said.
In addition to omitting Deem's votes, the original version of the minutes misattributed Daniel Matthews as having voted on his own appointment as chairperson. According to the audio recording of the meeting, Deem, not Matthews, can be heard voting in favor of Matthews' appointment. Matthews' abstention from that vote was not recorded in the minutes.
Deem was appointed unanimously as vice chairperson for the commission during the same meeting. Like Matthews, Deem did not participate in the vote on her appointment, according to the recording of the meeting. Also like Matthews, Deem's abstention from that vote was left out of the minutes.
The next meeting of the Shawnee Planning Commission is scheduled for Aug. 5, in the commission chambers of city hall. Blaine said the June 19 minutes would be re-considered by the planning commission at that time.