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Our attorneys stay on top of changes in legislation, agency regulations, case law, and industry trends—then craft timely legal alerts to keep clients up to date on legal developments important to their business.

March 18, 2020

Executive Order Allows Remote Attendance at NYS Public Meetings

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, New York’s Governor Cuomo signed Executive Order 202.1 on March 12, 2020, allowing meetings of public bodies to be held remotely by conference call or similar services, provided the public has the ability to view or listen to the proceedings and that the meetings are recorded and later transcribed. The executive order will remain in effect through April 11, 2020.

The New York State Economic Development Council recommends that its public authority members replace in-person meetings with remote telephonic or other digital meetings.

Because Executive Order 202.1 provides flexibility as to the method in which a meeting can be held, public authorities should continue to hold their regular meetings, particularly where necessary to approve and submit their annual information required by Public Authorities Law. In instances where a meeting will be held remotely, we recommend following regular public notice procedures with respect to providing information to the public on accessing remote meetings.

The New York State Authorities Budget Office (ABO) has also circulated a statement reminding public authorities that Public Authorities Law requires annual data to be submitted within 90 days after the end of the authority’s fiscal year and encouraging applicable public authorities to meet their March 31, 2020 filing deadline. However, to the extent a public authority is unable to meet the filing deadline, the ABO has said it will take into consideration hardships caused by the current COVID-19 pandemic when evaluating the timeliness of a filing.

If you have any questions regarding the content of this alert or would like assistance in setting up a public meeting using a means of remote attendance, please contact Connie Cahill, partner, at 518.429.4296 or mcahill@barclaydamon.com; Melissa Bennett, partner, at 518.429.4219 or mbennett@barclaydamon.com; or another member of the firm’s Public Finance Practice Area.

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