The city of Lewiston did the right thing Friday by releasing a two-page legal opinion from its attorney, Martin Eisenstein, about Wednesday’s closed council meeting. It needed to be done.

Councilors wouldn’t talk about the 3.5-hour session, though some spoke liberally about why it was convened: there is discontent among their ranks, a great deal of posturing is occurring, and the actions of some councilors caused concern among their colleagues.

They went into the meeting spouting, then came out silent. This was bad form, because it failed to inform the public the meeting achieved anything. Neither does Eisenstein’s memo, really, but it does outline the topics of discussion, which shows the council needed a renewal of its purpose.

Let’s hope it’s heeded. And let’s hope the council has learned another lesson – it is unfair to citizens to pop off in public, then settle matters in silence. It is perfectly acceptable to have differences of opinion on issues, after all. We would actually encourage it, as opposed to bland unanimity of thought.

Yet when the council elects to do such business behind closed doors, this impression doesn’t generate confidence, but wariness. So as always, we remind them to err on the side of transparency.


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