I was raised by a pacifist who wholly believed Dr King and Mahatma Ghandi’s creed of nonviolence. Then I learned about WWII and confronted bullies on the playground and realized that sometimes violence is a necessary response to injustice and violence. I enlisted in the Marines to put action to my belief that I was willing to do or suffer… Read More
In an article published today, the AJC stated (without citation or authority) that public hearings by local governments had to be held in person. That is flatly incorrect. Georgia cities, including Brookhaven, have been conducting public hearings via online platforms throughout the COVID-19 crisis and will continue to do so. The Open Meetings Act, O.C.G.A. § 51-14-1et seq., allows meetings to be by phone… Read More
Yesterday afternoon, the Governor issued Executive Order 05.12.20.02. Written in the intensely bureaucratic language we have come to expect, the Order is far from a model of clarity. By omission, the Governor has directed that public pools are allowed to reopen. Pools are not included or directly mentioned in the Executive Order but they are omitted from the list of… Read More
Chris is thrilled that his recent ordinance for Brookhaven, GA has been adopted by multiple municipalities, the Georgia Municipalities Association, and the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia It’s about saving lives and flattening the curve of COVID-19 to prevent its spread and not overwhelm our healthcare system, while still adhering to the City’s Charter and respecting our nation’s Constitution. Says… Read More
Defending Land-Use Cases When the Elected Ofﬁcial Is the Problem What to Do When They Say Something They Shouldn’t Have By Christopher D. Balch A well-conducted investigation will go a long way to helping a defense, but it is as much about public relations as about finding the truth and protecting public trust. Do the First Amendment rights of the… Read More
Learn how to limit or minimize potential fallout and other issues from comments and statements made by elected officials during legislative sessions. Civil Rights and Governmental Tort Liability Seminar | San Antonio, TX, January 31–February 1, 2019
Chris’ presented on the issue of disruptive speakers at local government council meetings, including a discussion of the Supreme Court’s recent case in Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach.
Presented by Chris Balch at the 65th Annual City & County Attorneys Institute. University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, September 13 & 14, 2018 Seven years ago, when I first spoke on the topic of crisis management and the 24/7 news cycle, I focused on the outside risks of misfeasance coming to light: camera phones, investigative reporters, CNN producers looking for… Read More