Governor’s gambling council won’t meet in public

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A panel that Gov. Robert Bentley created to recommend changes to Alabama’s gambling laws won’t meet in public.

The governor’s press secretary, Yasamie August, says the committee’s first meeting on Thursday will be closed to the public and media. Bentley’s spokeswoman says the advisory group isn’t subject to Alabama’s Open Meetings Law.

August says it’s up to the panel to decide whether future meetings will be public.

Bentley signed an executive order last month to create the advisory council on gambling. The group will make recommendations to Bentley ahead of the 2017 legislative session.

The governor created the panel after his lottery legislation failed.

A member of the panel, House Minority Leader Craig Ford, says he disagrees with the governor’s office and believes the meeting should be open.

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