RDA members could do meetings over the phone next year
By Carole Carlson email@example.com/648-3154 December 18, 2012 2:58PM
Updated: January 20, 2013 6:16AM
CROWN POINT — Next year, members of the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority can cast votes and be part of a quorum without physically attending the meeting.
RDA attorney David Hollenbeck said at Tuesday’s meeting an amended version of the state’s Open Door Law allows for the “telephonic voting” provision for public agencies like the RDA. It does not pertain to conventional government bodies like county councils or school boards.
Hollenbeck and board members are drafting a policy to govern the telephone participation. He said at least two the RDA’s seven members have to be present to conduct a public meeting.
Another change taking effect next year pertains to the RDA chairman, a job now held by former LaPorte mayor Leigh Morris who’s Gov. Mitch Daniels’ appointee.
Hollenbeck said the governor’s appointee will no longer be required to serve as chairman and RDA members can elect a chairman of their own choosing.
It’s unclear whether Morris will continue as the governor’s appointee. Gov.-elect Mike Pence hasn’t announced a decision yet on the appointee.
Morris wouldn’t say if he’s been asked to continue serving on the RDA but he said he has met with Gov. Mitch Daniels and Gov.-elect Mike Pence “to ensure continuity.”
Daniels named Morris as his appointee in 2008. Under its enabling legislation, the governor’s appointee has veto power over any RDA measure put forward for a vote.