September 2, 2011

Why I highlight a clerical error

Reasonable individuals may dissent question my decision to highlight a clerical error in my headline “Hamilton City Council to hold closed meeting “Monday, September 6, 2011″ – no notice sent to media or public.”

Simply put, it’s part of the story and could reveal either the haste that this meeting was called, hence explaining how informing the media was overlooked, or it could reveal that simple mistakes are being made which are compounding into the “miscommunication” crises starting to overshadow City Hall.

It also highlights that by posting the agenda quietly on the Friday afternoon preceding the long weekend, City Hall robbed the media of the opportunity to clarify the information.

When I first read the agenda, I was shocked that Council was meeting on a statutory holiday. It was only upon trying to enter the meeting into my calendar that I discovered the 6th was Tuesday.

My normal procedure for such errors is to privately, and kindly, email the clerk responsible for the agenda. This is normally done by replying to their email informing the media of the meeting. In this case, there was no email and I cannot know who the clerk is.

It’s part of the story of the confusion caused by the hasty scheduling of last-minute meetings at City Hall.

This is why I took the step of using the clerical error in the headline.