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2014-06-19

City's protracted executive sessions could amount to Cardenas' last stand*

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

From the looks of the agenda, the Bandera City Council meeting, slated for 6 pm, Thursday, June 19, will likely evolve into another protracted session.
One item to be covered in an executive session could spell a death knell for Mike Cardenas' continued employment as public works director. Conventional wisdom has been predicting this move since new city council members took oaths of office in November 2013.
That closed session covers council's deliberation of the appointment, employment, evaluation, reassignment, duties, discipline or dismissal of a public officer or employee, the city's director of public works. Council is also set to hear a complaint or charge against the director of public works.
Another executive session will deal with seeking legal advice from the city attorney regarding the city's legal obligations as related to investigations and responses to complaints against city employees. In this discussion, the interim city attorney may participate by teleconference.
That's the short version of that agenda item. Here it is as written:
"Executive session in accordance with Texas Government Code Section 551.071 to seek legal advice from the City's attorney on a matter for which it is the duty of the City's Attorney to consult with the City Council in private, in particular, the City's legal obligations related to investigations and responses to complaints raised against City employees. (City's Attorney may be participating by teleconference.)"
During the city council meeting on June 5, attorney Barbara L. Quirk, a partner in the law firm of McKamie Krueger LLP, acted on behalf of the city. As yet, however, council has not appointed the Boerne firm as interim counsel while the search for other legal representation continues. Additionally, council has purportedly failed to inform longtime municipal attorney Monte Akers that his law firm no longer represents the City of Bandera.
Additionally, while the agenda for the June 19 meeting was duly posted on the bulletin board outside the municipal building in a timely manner, e.g., 72 hours before the called meeting, it was not available online until after the legal posting time.
Interested parties who plan to attend city council meeting are advised to bring lawn chairs, flashlights and plenty of reading material. If Mayor Pro Tem John Hegemier is absent, onlookers will be regulated to the inhospitable pavement in front of 511 Main Street, while the debates rage on inside city hall.

*However rumor has it these two items may be pulled from the agenda!