Welcome to the website of the Office of Information Practices (OIP), which promotes open and transparent government in Hawai`i.
OIP administers two open government laws:
- the Uniform Information Practices Act (UIPA), HRS Chapter 92F, which requires open access to government records, and
- the Sunshine Law, part I of HRS Chapter 92, which requires open public meetings.
Both laws are intended to open up governmental processes to public scrutiny and participation by requiring government business to be conducted as transparently as possible, while balancing personal privacy rights guaranteed under the Hawai`i State Constitution.
OIP provides uniform interpretation, advice, and training on these laws to nearly all state and county agencies and boards and to the general public. OIP renders advice and assistance on questions concerning the public’s right to access to government records or meetings, and also provides training to help agencies comply with the laws. Although the public has the right to go to court without having to involve OIP, it is not necessary to hire attorneys or observe judicial formalities to obtain OIP’s assistance, and OIP’s free and informal proceedings are not subject to the contested case procedures of HRS Chapter 91.
To explain the open government laws’ requirements, OIP has training tools and guides readily available on this website. Training videos and OIP’s annual reports are posted on this website and there are links to other open government agencies around the world. In the What’s New section, OIP regularly provides updates on its activities as well as open government news from around the world. To receive OIP’s e-mailed What’s New updates, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and write “ADD ME” in the subject line.
Through OIP’s attorney of the day service, members of the public or government agencies can call (808) 586-1400 to receive (usually within 24 hours) general advice regarding the UIPA or Sunshine Law. If further action is necessary, OIP may conduct an investigation. When access to a public record has been denied by a government agency, the requester may file an appeal with OIP. OIP also renders formal or informal opinions, which are enforceable by the courts. OIP’s opinions, including a subject matter index, can be found on this website, along with the laws, rules, and various forms.
In addition to the UIPA and Sunshine Law, OIP administers the Records Report System (RRS), which is a computerized database (without the actual records) describing the more than 29,000 record titles of the various types of government records maintained by state and county agencies that may be available for public access. OIP also trains and assists agencies to use the UIPA Record Request Log and to upload their Log summaries to the State’s centralized website at data.hawaii.gov.
Through this website, you have access to a wealth of open government information and OIP is able to cost-effectively and efficiently share the knowledge of its experienced staff members to encourage greater awareness of and compliance with Hawaii’s UIPA and Sunshine Law. Thank you for visiting OIP’s website and we hope that you will find most of the answers to your open government questions here.