Ward 4 Trustee Andy Li denies committing Brown Act violation.
By Allen Payton
Prior to the start of the regular meeting of the Contra Costa Community College Governing Board on Wednesday, Dec. 8, the trustees will meet in closed session beginning at 4:00 p.m. to discuss the discipline/dismissal/release/complaint of Chancellor Bryan Reece. This would be another attempt by board members to discipline or remove him after little more than a year in the position. (See related articles here and here)
Asked which trustee or trustees requested the closed session item, which employee is the subject and which district employees does the board hire, 4CD PIO, Timothy Leong responded, “Items for the closed and open session agenda are developed collaboratively by the Chancellor and the Governing Board, and includes consultation with legal counsel. This includes personnel matters.” He also wrote, “The Governing Board only hires one person: the Chancellor. They Governing Board may also have input on other contract administrator positions, but the final decision on those positions is made by the Chancellor.”
Board President Andy Li was asked the same questions. “The board only hires the chancellor,” he responded.
Regarding which trustee or trustees requested the item be placed on the closed session agenda, Li said, “I don’t think I can disclose that. You can talk to the chancellor about that. He knows better whether we can or cannot.”
Request for Investigation and Censure of Governing Board President
In addition, during the regular meeting, which begins at 6:00 p.m., a censure and investigation of Li will be discussed. According to the staff report, Board Policy 1024 and Education Code Section 72121.5 afford members of the public the opportunity to place items on the agenda of meetings of the Governing Board subject to reasonable regulations.
On November 10, 2021, four members of an organization called CCC Latinx for Inclusion, Maria Alegria, former Mayor of Pinole; Genoveva Calloway, former Mayor of San Pablo; Contra Costa County Board of Education District 1 Trustee Consuelo Lara,; and Antioch School Board Trustee Mary Rocha, submitted a request that the Governing Board initiate an investigation into comments made by Governing Board President Andy Li at the June 23, 2021, Governing Board Meeting and is requesting that Mr. Li be subject to censure based on that investigation (see Board Back-up No. 20D). Ms. Alegria will be afforded up to five minutes to make her proposal to the Governing Board and to state the reasons for her requested action. Request for Censure of Andy Li 12-08-21
In their letter to the board they wrote, “Unfortunately, Trustee Li, under your leadership as President, you’ve repeatedly violated the Brown Act and governed with two different sets of standards for transparency and accountability.”
The letter continues, “Trustee Marquez, the most senior member of the Board, has requested twice that your censure for violating the confidentiality of closed session at the June 23 board meeting be placed on the agenda. Yet this request continues to be ignored. President Li, I have reviewed that video of the Board’s discussion on Agenda Item 18B: Interact Communications $10M Contract, which you stated was discussed in closed session. You were also cautioned by Trustees Barrett, Marquez and Sandoval, as well as Attorney Meola about this.”
They then offered an example of Li’s Brown Act violations, writing, “For example, at the May 26, 2021 4CD Board Meeting you read a prepared statement on your reasoning for recommending censure of Trustee Marquez. You stated: that you had grave concerns with Trustee Marquez’s conduct as he violated the confidentiality of closed session discussion”. This recommendation of censure of Trustee Marquez was an ‘action’ by the Board and was not listed on the agenda, under closed session or as a regular agenda item. You gave the public no opportunity to participate on this matter.”
Li Denies Committing Brown Act Violation
Asked if he had a response to the allegations, Li referred to another meeting, saying, “It was the second meeting in June between the 32-minute and 38-minute marks. People can check and make their judgment.”
Asked if there was a Brown Act violation what would he do to cure it, Li responded, “I didn’t. I did nothing wrong.”
Other Agenda Items
The regular meeting will begin at 6:00 p.m. with the following three items:
- a presentation from 4CD students to the Governing Board;
- a special recognition for Diablo Valley College (DVC) and Los Medanos College (LMC) in the promotion of Associate Degrees for Transfer; and
- Board Report No. 20A a public hearing on ward equalization based on the 2020 Census presented for approval is a Resolution Approving Adjusted Trustee Ward Areas Based on 2020 Census. (See related article)
Other highlights of the meeting are:
- Board Report No. 16A Contra Costa College will offer a new Associate in Science Degree for Transfer in Business Administration.
- Board Report No. 16B DVC will offer a new Associate in Science Degree for Transfer in Business Administration.
- Board Report No. 16D Your approval of this report will allow three different groups of DVC students to travel to Spokane, Washington, Honolulu, Hawaii and Washington, DC. These filed trips will allow students to participate in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, Aloha State Choral Festival and the National Student Advocacy Conference.
- Board Report No. 19A As requested at the August 11, 2021, Governing Board meeting, an overview of ongoing work by Interact/SIG, including an expenditure report, timeline and market update will be presented.
- Board Report No. 19C A listing of conferences of interest from January 2022 through February 2023 is presented for your information and planning purposes.
- Board Report No. 20B In accordance with Education Code Section 72000, a regular Governing Board meeting on December 15, 2021, is proposed so that the annual organizational meeting to select officers for December 2021 to December 2022 can be held.
- Board Report No. 20C This report is presented for approval to revise the 2021-22 Governing Board Meeting Calendar to accommodate the National Legislative Summit in Washington, DC that will be held in person in February 2022. Also presented for adoption is the 2022-23 Governing Board Meeting Calendar.
4CD Regular Governing Board Meeting – 12.8.21 agenda
The agenda for the above meeting and a memo highlighting certain reports are attached. The agenda can also be accessed at: 2021-12-08-GB Agenda
While Governing Board members will attend in person, audience members have the option of attending in-person or via Zoom.
If you are attending in person, public session will begin at 6:00 p.m. and will be held in the Second Floor Board Room. Please note that according to Contra Costa Health Services and effective August 3, 2021, masks are required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, in indoor public spaces such as businesses, classrooms and offices.
If you are attending remotely, please see the information below to access the meeting.
Meeting link: https://tinyurl.com/2021-12-08-GB-Agenda
Meeting ID No.: 972 7628 0768
Phone option: 1.669.900.6833
Public Comment: You may address an item on the agenda or a subject of your choice. The desired goal is to create an environment of mutual respect between participants of Governing Board meeting discussions; to enhance intellectual thought; and to insure that all present have an opportunity to present their views in an orderly fashion. If you would like to make public comment at this meeting, please see the information listed on the attached agenda. A fillable public comment card is also attached within the agenda and included here: 4CD Board Mtg Public Comment Card