TC PALM: Water district exempts panel from Sunshine Law, allows members to talk outside meetings

TC Palm: Written by Lucas Daprile. November 15, 2017. 

The South Florida Water Management District has changed an advisory commission to an "analysis coalition" so it doesn't have to follow the state's Sunshine Law.

The district rewrote the Water Resources Advisory Commission's charter — and renamed it the Water Resources Analysis Coalition — to change it from a body that issues formal recommendations to one engaged in "fact-finding" during a Nov. 9 governing board meeting.

"The changes appear to be an intentional attempt to avoid the public meeting requirements of state law, which significantly erodes any remaining credibility," said Lisa Interlandi, a senior attorney at the Everglades Law Center. "At this point, this entity is operating at public expense with very little discernible benefit."

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