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Ventura County DA's office asserts school district violated state's open meeting law

Element 5 Digital
Ventura County DA's office asserts the Ojai School District's board violated the Brown Act.

DA is demanding that the Ojai Unified School District commit to complying with the Brown Act.

Ventura County prosecutors have issued a cease and desist order to a school district, saying that its Board of Education violated the state’s open meeting laws.

The Ojai Unified School District has been looking at issues like staff cuts because of a major financial shortfall. During a February meeting, the school board met in closed session to discuss possible reductions. The planned discussion was on the agenda, as required by law.

But, DA’s office investigators say after the session, a trustee questioned the closed session, saying they had actually decided to make cuts. They say a trustee also said that during the closed session they gave staff direction on a number of things related to cuts.

The cease and desist letter from the DA’s office orders the school board to pass a resolution committing that it won’t violate the open meeting law, which is known as the Brown Act.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.