Del Mar City Council should keep residents informed

Per the Sept. 3 Del Mar City Council closed session agenda, the City is negotiating the price and terms with owners of office properties in the North Commercial, Professional Commercial and Central Commercial zones.

Did you know the city was even considering purchase or lease of commercial office properties? When did the Council discuss that? It hasn’t been on any open agenda.

I asked the City Manager if he could tell me the addresses and names of the property owners being negotiated with, and he said no, they were following the advice of the City Attorney. So why the secrecy? Discussing price and terms is certainly confidential, but according to State law, discussing desire to purchase/lease of downtown commercial properties and identifying the properties and names of the owners is required to be disclosed in the agenda!

So, why isn’t the City Council letting us know what they are doing? And why isn’t the City Attorney telling them that they are supposed to discuss “the people’s business” in the open, per the Brown Act?

The Del Mar Council should be able to depend on the advice of the City Attorney, but if it has a smell, they should not hesitate to question the advice. Maybe it’s time to replace the City Attorney (and the Council)?

Ralph Peck, Del Mar