Civic Center Authority fails to meet open meeting requirements with special meeting on potential Gems sale

Posted: Aug. 5, 2014 7:01 pm Updated: Aug. 19, 2014 8:15 pm

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

The Quincy Civic Center Authority plans to hold a special meeting at noon Wednesday to discuss the potential sale of the Quincy Gems, even though the agenda was not posted 48 hours in advance as required by state law.

The Illinois Open Meetings Act requires public bodies to post agendas at least 48 hours before any meeting, except a meeting held in the event of a bona fide emergency.

The Herald-Whig received the meeting notice at about 4 p.m. Tuesday. Rob Ebbing, executive director of the Oakley-Lindsay Center and the Quincy Gems, confirmed the notice was posted that day. The Illinois Open Meetings Act requires that meeting agendas be posted at the principle office of the public body and the location where the meeting is to be held.

After being informed of the 48-hour posting requirement under the Illinois Open Meetings Act, Ebbing said he would talk with board members to see if the meeting would be rescheduled.

However, Authority Chairman Hubert Staff said the meeting would go on as planned because there was much at stake for the community and the authority.

I hope The Quincy Herald-Whig will understand that, Staff said. The plan is to move forward.

Ebbing said he could not discuss whether one or more proposals would be presented to the board for consideration. He previously said the authority was in discussions with three bidders interested in keeping the Prospect League baseball team in Quincy.

Were still in discussion mode, Ebbing said. Were just keeping everything moving along, but (a sale) will not be approved I dont think (Wednesday).

The meeting comes as the Gems start a three-game playoff series against the Danville Dans at 6:35 p.m. Wednesday at QU Stadium.

The Gems were put on the market last October after the team lost more than $90,000 during the 2013 season. The team was supposed to make a commitment by Aug. 1 to participate in the Prospect League next season, but it recently was granted an extension to Sept. 1.