S Memo 15-7

Posted on Jun 30, 2015 in Informal Opinions - Sunshine Law

S Memo 15-7
June 30, 2015
Amendment of Agenda

Requester asked whether the Mililani/Waipio/Melemanu Neighborhood Board (Board) violated the Sunshine Law by amending its February 25, 2013 agenda during its meeting held on February 27, 2013, to recommend that the closure time at the Mililani Neighborhood Park be changed.

The Sunshine Law requires that boards give written public notice of meetings, which shall include an agenda listing all items to be considered. HRS § 92-7(a) (Supp. 2014). The Sunshine Law also provides that a filed agenda may be amended to add an item by a two-thirds recorded vote of all members to which the board is entitled, “provided that no item shall be added to the agenda if it is of reasonably major importance and action thereon by the board will affect a significant number of persons.” HRS § 92-7(d) (2012).

OIP found that the Board’s February agenda amendment was made in violation of the Sunshine Law because the recommendation to change the closure time at the Mililani Neighborhood Park was a matter of “reasonably major importance” and action thereon would affect a “significant number of persons.” The board, however, mitigated the harm of its violation by placing the recommendation on its subsequent April agenda and providing for community input and discussion at the April meeting. In the absence of any evidence that the Board actually voted to adopt the closure time recommendation at its April meeting, OIP concluded that the Board’s action to adopt the recommendation at its February meeting was voidable, but not voided, as no lawsuit was filed to challenge the action.