POMONA - A dispute over the Pomona Unified School District board's alleged failure to comply with the state's open meeting law appears to have come to an end.

Board members last week authorized their lawyer to sign a letter directed to a San Dimas open government advocate's attorney stating the board did not comply with provisions of the Brown Act when it put on the agenda items for discussion under the closed portion section of four meetings.

The items included the school district's parcel tax proposal, Measure SS, which will appear on the November ballot.

In the letter, attorney Kasey Haws writes, "I take full responsibility for the instances acknowledged above."

Haws said in meetings involving himself, San Dimas resident Gil Aguirre and his lawyer, Kelly Aviles, they found they had differing points of view on the placement of the agenda items.

"We had certain differences of opinion as to what legal ramifications there were," Haws said.

After further discussions and thought, Haws said he came to agree with them.

In August, Aguirre wrote to the school board notifying members they had violated the state's Brown Act when they conducted a closed-door session leading up to placement of the parcel tax proposal on next month's ballot.

In September, Haws disclosed at a school board meeting what took place at the meetings.

As part of the district's effort to improve and maintain compliance with the Brown Act the district "will train, and retrain where necessary, all PUSD personnel holding any position which implicates the Brown Act's mandates" with the involvement of representatives of Los Angeles County Office of Education, the letter said.

Also, the board will engage in a special training session before the public in January.

Haws said the training is something the district carries out regularly and is required of elected officials.

Having training in such a setting provides an opportunity for the public to make sure board members receive the proper information, Aviles said.

It ensures "people who know the laws can attend" and if inaccurate information is disseminated it can be pointed out, she said.

Although it's not in the letter, Aviles said she has been assured the manual to be used in the training session will be provided to her for review.

All together these steps put the school board on notice that she and Aguirre will be observing them, Aviles said, adding that it also sends a message to district residents that they too must be vigilant and pay attention to the actions of their elected officials.

As for the school board, "I hope they decide to really stand by their statement to be transparent," Aviles said. "When you violate the Brown Act this many times, they're not."

Haws said the district wanted to resolve the matter without going to court, a potentially expensive and protracted situation.

"Could we have gone to court? Sure, but why? At this point, trying to prove a point one way or another is not a wise use of public funds," Haws said.

Aguirre said he has mixed feelings about the resolution of the matter.

He's glad the board acknowledged the error but is disappointed he had to bring in a lawyer for it to do so.

In addition, he's surprised the school board did not engage in a discussion of the matter, Aguirre said.

"I was sort of flabbergasted," he said.

School Board President Richard Rodriguez said the work Aguirre and others like him do "in a way is doing a service because it keeps people on the ball."

However, in this case, while Aguirre felt violations were committed, the board does not think so, Rodriguez said.

"Apparently something was not posted on the agenda as it should have been," he said. "It was not intentional."