OIP’S 2011 Annual Report

Posted on Jan 4, 2012 in What's New

January 4, 2012

The state Office of Information Practices has released its annual report for fiscal year (FY) 2011, which began on July 1, 2010, and ended on June 30, 2011. The full report can be found on OIP’s website at hawaii.gov/oip/reports.html.

Because the annual report is on a fiscal year basis, it does not describe OIP’s activities for the latter half of the calendar year. For calendar year 2011, OIP initiated the following new products and activities:

• Three free on-line training videos regarding the Uniform Information Practices Act (UIPA) and the Sunshine Law, which are available 24/7 to anyone
• Continuing legal education seminars in Honolulu, Hilo, Kona, Kahului, and Wailea, which trained over 265 state and county government attorneys, as well as private attorneys and members of the public
• Workshops for board personnel and attorneys on how to write agendas and minutes complying with the Sunshine Law
• A new online “Agenda Guidance for Sunshine Law Boards”
• A new online Sunshine Law Guide specifically for Neighborhood Boards
• Updated online guides for the Sunshine Law and UIPA, as well as Personnel Guidelines
• The first online survey to determine users’ needs and satisfaction with OIP’s services
• Weekly e-mails of open government news and OIP’s updates
• Legislative proposals for the 2012 session

While the annual report shows that OIP’s budget allocations have decreased every year since FY 2008 and explains that one staff attorney position was largely unfilled since FY 2010 due to budget restrictions, OIP has accomplished more with less in 2011, by effectively using technology and efficiently leveraging its staff. By proactively educating government personnel–especially the key legal advisors to the agencies and boards–and by making the training also available to members of the public and “watchdogs” through the use of technology, OIP hopes to increase understanding of and compliance with Hawaii’s open government laws and to quickly resolve any problems that may arise.

OIP will be busy in the first half of 2012 with the legislative session and OIP’s proposals to clarify and modernize Hawaii’s open government laws, which will be discussed in an upcoming What’s New article. Depending on the legislative results, OIP plans to work on appeal and other administrative rules in the second half of 2012 and also hopes to reduce its backlog of cases then.

OIP looks forward to 2012 and wishes everyone a Hauoli Makahiki Hou!