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Seattle to pay $3,500 to settle 1 of 2 open-meeting lawsuits

March 5, 2019 GMT

SEATTLE (AP) — The city of Seattle has agreed to pay $3,500 and will advise City Council members against using private tally sheets to count votes ahead of public meetings under a settlement in one of two lawsuits that allege the council broke Washington’s Open Public Meetings Act before its abrupt repeal of the business tax last year.

The Seattle Times reports the settlement with Seattle attorney James Egan calls for a city payment of $1,000 in exchange for Egan dropping claims against Councilmembers Sally Bagshaw and Mike O’Brien.

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The city also agreed to pay $2,500 to address at least five alleged open meetings-act violations by Councilmember Lorena González.

The second lawsuit filed by open-government activist Arthur West remains set for trial in June.

City Attorney Pete Holmes maintains the council did not break the open-meetings law.

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Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com