S Memo 11-5

Posted on Dec 20, 2010 in Informal Opinions - Sunshine Law

S Memo 11-5
December 20, 2010
Sufficiency of Agenda

Note: The statute at issue in this opinion, section 92-7(a), HRS, was amended by Act 68 (April 30, 2014), which would materially affect the conclusion reached in similar future opinions.  Act 68 provides that when a board considers the proposed adoption, amendment or repeal of administrative rules, its agenda is sufficient to give public notice under the Sunshine Law if it includes a statement on the topic of the proposed rules or a general description of the subjects involved, as described in section 91-3(a)(1)(A), HRS, and a statement of when and where the proposed rules may be viewed in person or on the internet as provided in section 91-2.6, HRS.

Requester asked whether the agenda for the August 14, 2009 meeting of the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) met the notice requirements under the Sunshine Law.

OIP found that the August 14 agenda was not sufficient under the Sunshine Law because it did not reasonably allow a member of the public to understand what rule amendments BLNR would be discussing.

This agenda item provides notice that BLNR would be discussing amendment of certain portions of all of DOBOR’s administrative rules. Given the breadth of this agenda item which encompassed possible amendment of every BLNR administrative rule regulating ocean recreation and coastal areas, OIP does not believe that the agenda item provided reasonable public notice of the actual proposed rule amendments to be considered at the meeting.

OIP advised that, at a minimum, the agenda should have provided the section numbers of the rules to be amended and a brief description of the subject matter of those rules and proposed amendments. Without this minimum level of detail, OIP does not believe the members of the public would have enough information to allow meaningful participation in the BLNR meeting.