Remote meetings to continue in Seal Beach

City Council must review decision every 30 days

File photo

The Seal Beach City Council and city commissions will continue to hold remote meetings for now.

The council voted unanimously on Monday, Oct. 25, to continue the virtual meetings.

Prior to the vote, City Attorney Craig Steele recommended that the council review the COVID-19 situation and determine that the council and other government boards continue to meet remotely.

“This is the first of these reviews,” Steele said.

Under a new state law that went into effect at the start of the month, the council will have to review this policy every 30 days.

“Remote meetings under relaxed Brown Act rules were permitted by Governor Newsom’s executive Order N-29-20, which expired on September 30, 2021,” wrote Steele in his report to the council.

“In its place, the Legislature passed AB 361, which became effective October 1, 2021,” Steele wrote.

According to City Attorney Steele, AB 361 allows remote meetings to continue during local emergencies. According to Steele, Government Code Section 54953(e) would require the agency to review the requirements every 30 days.

“If the City Council continues to meet remotely, AB 361 requires that the public have real time opportunities to participate,” Steele wrote.

“State, County and City-declared states of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic remain in effect,” Steele wrote.

“Authorities, including Cal OSHA, recommend that businesses and entities continue to practice social distancing indoors as well as other measures to guard against the virus,” Steele wrote.

“Under the current circumstances, the City Council would be justified in determining that City bodies should continue to meet remotely under the rules set forth in Government Code Section 54953(e),” Steele wrote.

“Staff will provide the required real time public participation measures,” Steele wrote.

“As required by law, the City Council will review this matter every 30 days. as meeting schedules permit,” Steele wrote.

In other city news, this week’s Parks and Recreation Commission meeting was canceled.

Remote meetings to continue in Seal Beach