S Memo 16-3

Posted on Dec 22, 2015 in Informal Opinions - Sunshine Law

S Memo 16-3
December 22, 2015
Insufficient Agenda Description of Personnel Matter
for Discussion in Executive Meeting

On agendas for two meetings in September and October 2013, the Kauai County Council listed the same personnel matter for discussion in executive session, but Appellant complained that the agendas did not give any description of the actual personnel matter.  OIP found that the agenda item at issue merely identified the statutory authority for going into the executive session, namely, the discussion of certain personnel actions against an officer or employee that involved matters affecting privacy, and that it was not clear from those agendas that personnel matters concerning the County Auditor would be discussed in executive session.  Therefore, OIP opined that the two agendas did not provide sufficient detail that would enable a member of the public to reasonably understand the subject of the matter and to decide whether to attend and to participate through oral or written testimony during the open portion of the meeting.  Consequently, OIP concluded that the Council’s agendas for these two meetings violated the Sunshine Law by giving improper notice of the agenda item concerning the personnel matter.