What is characterized as a slip-up at a recent Bossier Parish Police Jury meeting illustrates a yawning gap in Louisiana’s public records laws that the Legislature needs to fix next year.
If you weren’t in the Jury’s chambers of the Bossier Parish courthouse for its meeting this week, you’re out of luck in knowing any details about some vital issues. At it, the fiscal year 2023 budget was dealt with, as well fee changes and restructuring its utility arm the Consolidated Waterworks/Sewerage District No. 1, and also the outcome from the Jury placing a new member on the parish’s Library Board of Control, which over the past couple of years has seen citizen members depopulated in favor of jurors.
Perhaps the most important meeting of the year citizens only can find out about if they wait around about a month to have posted in print and online the official minutes, which contain ordinance texts and vote results, but no real detail about discussions. If they want any details, they will have to resort to copious and burdensome public records requests.