Approach to Agenda Items

I have followed a couple important rules.

First, be prepared. Read, ask questions, and think about it. Second, avoid going public with a decision until absolutely necessary. New information may arise, and it is hard to go back on a commitment to vote a certain way.

In roles similar to that of a Board member, I have researched the question, listened to constituents, consulted with outside experts as appropriate, and considered the recommendation of senior staff who are in their positions due to their qualifications. Then I have used my judgment to debate and vote as I see appropriate. The optimal decision is made after diverse and well-prepared points of view are really heard and discussed.

Guidance must be considered in the context of local circumstances and liability associated with deviating from direction from state (or other) authorities. The right answer is more important than popularity and re-election.

In my time in public service (and career), I have been faced with many legal, engineering, accounting, and other questions for which the guidance of specialized experts is essential. I ask questions and evaluate answers to satisfy myself that the expert advice is sound. Decisions must be made in real time. What do we know at the moment without the benefit of hindsight?

The Open Meetings Act makes government boards different from other boards and committees. Agendas must be published in advance, and the meetings must not address issues outside those agendas. My extensive City Council experience prepared me to serve on this governing board.