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Citizens question supervisors’ compliance with Sunshine Act

January 9, 2011

Jay Township residents recently called into question the township supervisors’ understanding of the state's Sunshine Act, which dictates that certain meetings must be open to the public.

WEEDVILLE – After hearing the supervisors’ plans for moving forward without a roadmaster, residents of Jay Township called into question the supervisors’ understanding of Pennsylvania’s Sunshine Act, which dictates that certain meetings must be open to the public.
After supervisors Jeremy Rippey and Francis Gustafson voted to discontinue the roadmaster position, which was previously held by supervisor Murray Lilley, during their reorganizational meeting on Jan. 3, the supervisors held a special meeting on Friday morning to discuss their plans moving forward.
According to Gustafson, those plans included holding weekly meetings between the three supervisors to discuss work that would be performed by the township’s road crew.
“Since we’re not going to have this roadmaster, we’re going to do weekly schedules so everybody knows what they’re going to do every week,” Gustafson said.
Township residents quickly called into question whether this would comply with the Pennsylvania Sunshine Act, since the meetings would not be advertised or open to the public.
Of particular concern to citizens was Rippey's indication that he and Gustafson may have already been holding such meetings on a weekly basis.
During Friday morning’s meeting, Rippey stated to Lilley, “We get together once a week. Right now we (Rippey and Gustafson) have been doing it on Fridays.”
Rippey was then interrupted by township resident and former supervisor Bob Coppolo, who asked about the supervisors’ familiarity with the Sunshine Act.
For more on this story, see the Jan. 10 edition of The Daily Press.

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