The State Office of Information Practices (OIP) has posted its report to the Legislature on the implementation of Sunshine Law meetings held using interactive conference technology (ICT). This report was required by Act 220, SLH 2021, which made major amendments to the Sunshine Law to allow the use of remote meetings.
ICT may be used for both in-person as well as remote meetings. For example, a fully in-person meeting may occur at multiple physical locations connected by ICT, with board members and the public attending in person at one of the locations. ICT is also used for remote meetings to allow board members and the public to attend the meeting online, and to connect them to the physical location required for a remote meeting in case other attendees have no ability or desire to participate online.
Overall, it has been OIP’s impression that remote meetings have been popular and have helped to increase public access to Sunshine Law meetings. While there were questions and concerns when Act 220 and other substantive revisions to the Sunshine Law went into effect earlier this year, implementation of the amendments has been reasonably smooth, thanks in large part to the delayed effective date of Act 220, which gave OIP time to extensively revise its training materials and inform boards of the new statutory provisions.
Given the many substantive changes made to the Sunshine Law and OIP’s training materials in the past year, OIP has no plans to seek significant amendments to the Sunshine Law in the upcoming session.