Alameda will release secret recording of councilmembers; rejects Vella’s claim

Alameda residents will soon learn the contents of a recording secretly made by its former city manager, Jill Keimach. The Alameda City Council directed its city attorney Tuesday night to prepare a transcript of the 55-minute recording of an August 2017 meeting between Keimach and Councilmembers Jim Oddie and Malia Vella.

The council also voted to formally reject a claim by Vella, believed to be related to her privacy being violated by release of the recording.

Meanwhile, the city attorney’s office has not yet announced when the transcript will be available for dissemination. Oddie and Vella recused themselves from the closed session discussions.

The recording and the fallout from the city’s scandal, in which Keimach accused the councilmembers of improperly interfering in her duties to hire a new fire chief, has roiled the city’s politics and is poised to again by a heated topic of discussion in next year’s council elections. Keimach said she made the secret recording of Oddie and Vella during a meeting at City Hall because suspected a crime could have occurred.

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