Yonkers can’t produce evidence of public notices for ballot proposition meetings

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Yonkers residents voted on two charter revision ballot propositions today regarding mayoral succession and the approval of mayoral appointees.

The process that put these two propositions on the ballot drew complaints from city residents in August, so the Journal News filed a freedom of information law request with the city on Aug. 16 seeking paper, e-mails or memos documenting that appropriate public notice was given by the charter commission for its meetings on July 29 and Aug. 2.

On Oct. 28 the city’s law department mailed a letter responding to the request, indicating that the city could find no documents fitting the description of “papers, e-mail or memos” showing that public notice was given. That letter arrived today.

In September the Yonkers City Council asked Yonkers Inspector General Dan Schorr to investigate the commission’s process for noticing some of its meetings and hearings and whether the propositions were legally valid.

Last month Schorr concluded that the commission issued legally sufficient public notice, though he recommended that city officials adopt a local law clarifying how the commission is to issue public notice about its meetings and hearings.

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