December 27, 2012 | Vol. 116 -- No. 36

Cheney City Council concludes 2012 business – quickly

Cheney’s City Council meeting Thursday Dec. 20 set a record that might stand for quite a while.

At one minute, 44 seconds it was likely the shortest council meeting ever held, with only one item addressed before adjournment – paying the bills.

The meeting had been moved from its normal fourth Tuesday of the month, which this December falls on Christmas Day, to last Thursday by council vote at the Nov. 27 meeting. However the city issued a “Notice of Meeting Continuation” to reconvene the Dec. 11 meeting, something Mayor Tom Trulove did in calling the meeting to order.

According to state law, no council action such as paying bills – can take place at a public meeting unless that meeting date has been fixed by ordinance, resolution or rule or if adequate public notification of a change is provided. Because the Dec. 20 meeting did not meet these requirements, Trulove said city legal counsel advised them it could be deemed a special meeting, and in order to take care of business, would need instead to reconvene.

“I was a little surprised too,” Trulove said Friday. “I think if you look somewhere in the minutes (Dec. 11) I adjourned the meeting.”

So at 4 p.m. Dec. 20, Trulove reconvened the Dec. 11 meeting, the Pledge of Allegiance was recited and roll call was taken, with Councilmen Fred Pollard and Bob Stockton absent due to work-related reasons and excused. The first item of business was called for and presented by Finance Director and City Clerk Cindy Niemeier, claims and vouchers in the amount of $538,271.35 were presented.

Finance committee chair Teresa Overhauser told the council the committee had reviewed the claims and vouchers, asked and had questions answered and presented them for council approval – which it did unanimously. Trulove then moved for adjournment, again unanimously approved – 1:44 after convening.

That led to the last order of business, everyone wishing each other a “Merry Christmas.”

John McCallum can be reached at jmac@cheneyfreepress.com.

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