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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.

November 8, 2021

NYS Governor Hochul Signs Amendment to Open Meetings Law

On October 19, 2021, NYS Governor Hochul signed legislation amending the Open Meetings Law, which is a part of the New York Public Officers Law, to expand when certain documents are to be made available to the public before open meetings held by governmental and other public entities.  

Section 103(e) of the Public Officers Law, as amended, requires all public entities, such as state and local governments and other public entities, to make available agency records as well as any proposed resolution, law, rule, regulation, policy, or any amendment that is scheduled to be discussed during the public entity’s meeting when the general public may be in attendance, to the extent practicable, at least 24 hours prior to the meeting at which these records will be discussed. In addition, if the public body maintains a regularly and routinely updated website, these records are to be posted on the website, to the extent practicable, at least 24 hours prior to the meeting. 

The new legislation adds the “at least 24 hours” timing requirements to the caveat of “to the extent practicable,” where previously, the requirement was “to the extent practicable as determined by the agency or the department.” Accordingly, public entities should plan to make available and post on their websites any documents that are going to be discussed at a meeting not less than 24 hours before the meeting begins.

The new law takes effect November 18, 2021—30 days after the bill was signed into law.

If you have any questions regarding the content of this alert, please contact Sharon Brown, co-chair of the firm’s Public Finance Practice Area, at slbrown@barclaydamon.com; Melissa Bennett, partner, at mbennett@barclaydamon.com; Samantha Podlas, associate, at spodlas@barclaydamon.com; or another member of the firm’s Public Finance Practice Area. Alternatively, you may contact Jim Canfield or Mike Moore, co-chairs of the firm’s Corporate Practice Area, at jcanfield@barclaydamon.com and mmoore@barclaydamon.com, respectively; Charlie Martorana, partner, at cmartorana@barclaydamon.com; or another member of the firm’s Corporate Practice Area. 

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