S Memo 12-4

Posted on Sep 13, 2011 in Informal Opinions - Sunshine Law

S Memo 12-4
September 13, 2011
Written Testimony Submitted by E-Mail

Requester asked for an investigation into whether the Kauai County Council (Council) violated the Sunshine Law by its alleged refusal to accept written testimony that Requester submitted by e-mail concerning an item on the Council’s agenda for its upcoming meeting.

OIP found that Requester’s e-mail correspondence to the Council served as written testimony for an upcoming meeting. If the Council had failed to distribute the testimony, this would have violated the Sunshine Law’s requirement upon a board to accept written testimony submitted by the public. The Council’s apparent omission of Requester’s transmittal e-mail as testimony, however, was mitigated because, with respect to the four documents attached to Requester’s testimony, the Council had considered and made public redacted versions of two of the same documents that had been provided as testimony by another person and the other two attached documents were not required to be disclosed in order to protect the privacy of the government employee named therein.