Community lawyer Ben Silver helped advise a reporter after the Marseilles, IL mayor and city council acted outside of a formal meeting to draft and send a letter discontinuing its membership in the local chamber of commerce. The reporter and chamber both sent requests for review to the Public Access Counselor, who issued a non-binding determination letter stating that Marseilles violated the Open Meetings Act. Following the letter, a city attorney complained that responding to the complaint cost Marseilles more than $2000. Ben's advice: "Follow the law."
In late January, community lawyers Maryam Judar and Ben Silver appeared on cable access program Public Perspective TV, hosted by Kevin McDermott. During the half hour program, Maryam and Ben answered questions about the Citizen Advocacy Center's resources and shared stories of civic engagement. The program aired in February on Comcast Channel 19, and can be viewed on Public Perspective TV's website.
Community lawyer Ben Silver moderated the FOIA 101 panel at the Chicago Headline Club's annual FOIAFest. Joined by John Chase, David Kidwell, and Josh Burday, the panel discussed the basics of submitting a FOIA request, including how requesters can avoid or address the problems they often run into. Mr. Chase and Mr. Kidwell compared and contrasted the public record request laws of different states where they worked as journalists; a big takeaway was that Illinois FOIA practice is much more adversarial than it is in other states. Mr Burday, a FOIA litigator, shared his insight from the courts' perspective.
Local Government Candidacy for Beginners
DATE:Saturday, April 14, 2018
TIME:10:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
PLACE: College of Dupage, Culinary & Hospitality Center, Waterleaf Restaurant:
425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, Illinois 60137
Are you interested in running for local office and want to know more about it? Here's your chance to ask those in-the-know! Hear presentations from eight local public officials, get information about getting and staying on the ballot, and more.
Sponsored by the Citizen Advocacy Center, the League of Women Voters, Immigrant Solidarity DuPage, and College of DuPage.
PLACE:The Esplande: 1901 W. ButterfieldRd., Downers Grove, Illinois 60515
CAC will participate in the Human Race, which is sponsored by Giving DuPage. The race is a 5K run or a 2-mile fitness walk that benefits CAC (and 70 other nonprofit organizations in DuPage County). This is going to be a great family-friendly event. Children and dogs are welcome!
In February, attendees and online viewers learned about the nuts and bolts of the nomination process for the federal judiciary, and the traditional nomination process has been upended. This is cause for concern because these procedures helped to ensure that all judges nominated for lifetime appointments on the federal bench could decide cases free from outside influence. Attendees left with a better understanding of the important civil rights issues before the array of federal courts (and not just before the most famous of them all, the Supreme Court of the United States), and of the particular salience of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals as the controlling federal appellate court for jurisprudence in our state.
This event was co-sponsored by Court Matter Illinois.
The work of CAC depends on the investment of people like YOU. Will you make a gift today to support building democracy in communities like yours?