S Memo 20-3

Posted on Mar 3, 2020 in Informal Opinions - Sunshine Law

S Memo 20-3
March 3, 2020
Notice of Request for Permit

An individual asked for an investigation into whether the Hana Advisory Committee to the Maui Planning Commission (HAC) violated the Sunshine Law by failing to provide adequate public notice of its discussion of a request for a special management area (SMA) permit.

The Sunshine Law does not apply to “adjudicatory functions exercised by a board and governed by sections 91-8 and 91-9[, HRS.]”  HRS § 92-6(a) (2012).  Because the SMA permit hearing was an exercise of HAC’s adjudicatory function and was governed by section 91-9, HRS, OIP concluded that it was exempt from the Sunshine Law’s requirements.  Thus, even if HAC had failed entirely to give any kind of notice of the SMA permit hearing, that failure could not violate the Sunshine Law, because the Sunshine Law does not apply to such hearings.