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Blagojevich Signs Closed Meeting Taping Measure

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Local governments in Illinois must now tape closed meetings.

By AP/KWMU

Springfield, Ill. – Government bodies in Illinois now must record their private meetings to ensure elected officials behave properly.

Governor Rod Blagojevich signed the legislation into law Tuesday.

City councils, county boards and other government groups must conduct most business in public, but they can go into private sessions for a few specific reasons.

The governor says he signed it despite opposition from many local governments

"We spent a lot of time making sure we weren't unduly creating problems for municipal governments," Blagojevich said. "It means more open access; it's the right approach."

Opponents have said having a tape recording rolling during closed door sessions would stifle debate and be an unfair cost burden to tape all the meetings.

But supporters, including many media groups like the
Illinois News Broadcasters Association, say the costs would be minimal and only illegal debate would be stifled.

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