The state Office of Information Practices (OIP) has updated its UIPA and Sunshine Law materials to reflect the recent changes enacted by Acts 91, 92, and 140, Session Laws of Hawaii (SLH) 2015.
Although Act 91 does not change the Sunshine Law itself, which is Part I of HRS Chapter 92, it amends provisions that only relate to neighborhood boards in HRS Section 92-82. The amended neighborhood board provisions, along with the Sunshine Law, are found in the Open Meeting Guide to “The Sunshine Law” for Neighborhood Boards, which can be accessed through the link to the Sunshine Law Guide found on OIP’s training page at oip.hawaii.gov.
The same link will take you to the Open Meeting Guide to “The Sunshine Law” for State and County Boards, which has also been updated. Modest revisions have been made to both Sunshine Law guides primarily in the discussions of permitted interactions and executive sessions. Additionally, extraneous materials have been removed from the guides, such as the Sunshine Law opinion letter summaries. All Sunshine Law formal opinions, summaries of informal opinions, and the index are still available on OIP’s opinions page.
OIP also updated its Open Records Guide to Hawaii’s Uniform Information Practices Act and the unofficial copy of the law itself that is found on OIP’s website to reflect the changes made by Act 92 and to make other minor revisions. The statutory changes that went into effect on June 5, 2015 apply only to HRS Section 92F-42(5) and (16), which now make clear that OIP has the same power and authority under both the UIPA and Sunshine Law to examine agencies’ records and to have standing to appear in court cases. The guide and law do not currently contain additional changes to the UIPA regarding OIP’s transfer to the Department of Accounting and General Services for administrative purposes, because those provisions of Act 92 will not go into effect until July 1, 2016, as the logistics of the move are being worked out.
With the enactment of Act 140, SLH 2015, on June 25, 2015, OIP’s unofficial copy of the UIPA was also amended to reflect the addition of HRS Section 92F-14(b)(10), which adds as an example of a significant privacy interest “[i]nformation that if disclosed would create a substantial and demonstrable risk of physical harm to an individual.” Note that this change does not create a new exception to the general policy of disclosure, and merely adds an example of a significant privacy interest that must be balanced against the public interest in disclosure.
As previously noted in the June 25, 2015 What’s New, OIP has updated the UIPA Record Request Log form for FY 2016 to include the Legislature (through the House and Senate Clerk’s offices) and state legislative agencies to the drop-down menu, and has updated the Instructions and Frequently Asked Questions to reflect the addition of these agencies. Additionally, OIP created a Tip Sheet for UIPA Log Users in March 2015 to help them avoid some of the common entry errors. The Log form and training materials are posted at the UIPA record request training page.
Since January of this year, OIP has created or updated the following Sunshine Law training materials, which can be found on its Sunshine Law additional guidance page:
- Quick Review: Sunshine Law Options to Address State Legislative Issues and Measures (new January 2015)
- Checklist and County Council’s Request to Waive Videotaping of a Meeting as Guests of a Board or Community Group (new March 2015)
- Quick Review: Sunshine Law Meeting Notice Requirements (rev. May 2015)
This year, OIP also updated the following guide found on its UIPA additional guidance page:
- Informal Guide to Processing Large or Complex UIPA Record Requests (rev. April 2015)
For the latest open government news, check for archived copies of What’s New articles that are posted here, or e-mailed upon request. To be added to OIP’s e-mail list, please e-mail [email protected]. Also, if you would like to receive What’s New articles or attachments in a Word format, please contact OIP at (808) 586-1400 or [email protected].