Presentation on theme: "Indiana’s Public Access Laws"— Presentation transcript:
1Indiana’s Public Access Laws Open Door Law(ODL) I.C et seq.Access to Public Records Act(APRA) I.C et seq.Hello! My name is Sylvia Watson and I am the attorney for the Indiana State Library. This webinar will cover the basics of Indiana’s public access laws.Please keep in mind that this presentation is intended to be informational in nature and is not to be construed as legal advice. Any statements or opinions in this presentation are not intended to be and should not be considered a substitute for legal advice from your library’s own attorney.Presented by:Sylvia WatsonIndiana State Library
2Open Door Laws The Open Door Law (“ODL”) Ind. Code § 5-14-1.5-1 With the exception of Executive Sessions, “all meetings of the governing bodies of public agencies must be open at all times for the purpose of permitting members of the public to observe and record them.” I.C. § (a).The ODL also requires 48-hour advanced notice of meetings. I.C. §Indiana’s public access laws are comprised of the Open Door Law and the Access to Public Records Act (commonly known as APRA). First we will discuss the Open Door Law and then we will cover APRA.The purpose of the Open Door Law is to provide the opportunity for the public to be fully informed as to the official actions of public agencies. In keeping with the purpose of the law, all meetings of the governing bodies of public agencies are to be open at all times so that the public can observe and record them. Executive Sessions are an exception to this requirement and we will go into that exception further in a few minutes.In order for the public to be able to observe the meetings of public agencies, they have to be informed as to when the meetings will occur. This is the basis for the requirement that public agencies post notices of meetings at least 48 hours in advance.
3Open Door Laws What about committees? A committee must comply with the Open Door Law if the committee has been appointed directly by a governing body or its presiding officer to take official action on public business. I.C. § (b)(3).The requirement to conduct business openly doesn’t stop with the library board. Any committee appointed or created by the board is also subject to the requirements of the Open Door Laws. Committees appointed by the board must meet publicly and must inform the public of upcoming committee meetings by posting a meeting notice 48 hours in advance.
4Open Door Laws What is a Meeting? A gathering of a majority of the governing body for the purpose of taking official action upon public business. I.C. § (c).So what does it mean to have a meeting? The Open Door Laws, describe a meeting as a gathering of a majority of the governing body for the purpose of taking official action on public business.This means for a board comprised of 7 members, 4 must be present to constitute a gathering of a majority of the governing body.For a committee of 3 people appointed by the library board, 2 must be present to constitute a gathering of a majority of the governing body of that committee.
5Open Door Laws What is “Official Action?” I.C. § 5-14-1.5-2(d). Any one of these items constitutes official action:receiving informationdeliberatingmaking recommendationsestablishing policymaking decisionstaking final action (i.e. voting)I.C. § (d).Official action constitutes any one of the following: receiving information, deliberating, making recommendations, establishing policy, making decisions, taking final action or voting.As you can see, official action is defined very broadly and could constitute something as simple as just receiving information.“Public Business” is also very broadly defined to mean any function upon which the library is empowered or authorized to take official action.
6Open Door Laws What is NOT a Meeting? Any social or chance gatherings not intended to avoid ODL;On-site inspections;Traveling to and attending meetings of organizations devoted to the betterment of government;Caucuses (TIP: avoid official action)See I.C. § (c).What happens if four or more library board members want to attend the same social function, or happen to show up at the same social event? The Open Door Laws say this is NOT considered a meeting and therefore, those board members have not violated the law. Additionally, the board’s presence at on-site inspections of a project or program is not considered a meeting. Traveling to and attending meetings of organizations devoted to the betterment of government is not considered a meeting.Attending a caucus; gathering for the sole purpose of administering an oath to an officer; and orientation of members of the governing body on their role and responsibilities as public officials are all not considered meetings under the Open Door Laws. That means there does not have to be any notice provided to the public and it is not necessary to permit the general public to come along and observe.It is important to remember that the board could turn a chance gathering or social event into an illegal board meeting by taking official action with regard to library business.
7Open Door Laws Serial Meetings (ODL § 3.1) three members but less than a quorum meetsubsequent meetings involve at least 2 memberssum of all meeting attendees constitutes a quorumall meetings held within 7 days & concern same topicHeld to take official action on public businessIn previous years, there was apparently an issue with governing bodies avoiding the Open Door Laws by holding a series of mini-meetings, each having less than a quorum of the governing body present so they could meet in private without providing notice to the public. In response to this, in 2007, the Indiana General Assembly enacted the Serial Meetings provision in an attempt to stop this behavior. A Serial Meeting is when 3 members of the governing body meet, and then there are additional meetings with different members within a 7 day period, each subsequent meeting having less than a quorum present but the sum of all the meetings put together would create a quorum. Serial Meetings are prohibited.
8Open Door Laws Executive Sessions (I.C. § 5-14-1.5-6.1) The instances are narrowly construedThe governing body may not take final action (i.e., vote) in an executive session but may make decisions in the executive session. See Baker v. Town of Middlebury, 753 N.E.2d 67 (Ind. Ct. App. 2001).The law provides public entities with the opportunity to have private meetings in certain limited circumstances when public meetings are not the best option given the circumstances. Those meetings are called Executive Sessions.The board can take official action in an Executive Session (for example, receive information, deliberate, etc.) but cannot take FINAL action in an Executive Session. So, any votes and so forth would need to take place in the open public meeting.
9Open Door Laws Some Reasons for Executive Sessions Discussion of strategy with respect to initiation of litigation or litigation that is pending or has been threatened in writing (ODL § 6.1(b)(2)(B))To receive information about and interview prospective employees (ODL § 6.1(b)(5))To discuss a job performance evaluation (ODL § 6.1(b)(9))The law provides very specific situations in which Executive Sessions are permitted so you will want to consult the law for the list of circumstances under which an executive session may be legally held.Some of the more common reason we see libraries using are:Discussion of strategy with respect to initiation of litigation or litigation that is pending or has been threatened in writing (ODL § 6.1(b)(2)(B))To receive information about and interview prospective employees (ODL § 6.1(b)(5))To receive information about and discuss alleged misconduct of a library employee and discuss that person’s status as an employeeTo discuss a job performance evaluation (ODL § 6.1(b)(9))While the board can meet to discuss the job performance evaluation of particular employees, the board cannot use executive sessions to discuss salary, compensation, or benefits during the budget process.
10Open Door Laws Notice Requirements (ODL § 5) Notice requirements apply to all meetings, including executive sessionsRequirements: date, time and location of meeting posted 48 hours in advance of meeting48 hours does not include weekends or holidaysTIP: Specific time is requiredMeeting notices are required for all meetings, even executive sessions. Meeting notices must be posted at agency’s principal office or if there is no principal office, the notice should be posted at the building where the meeting will occur.You need to have posted the date, time and location of meeting 48 hours in advance of meeting48 hours does not include weekends or holidays
11Open Door Laws Executive Session Notice: Must contain the same information as for an open meeting, but must also state the subject matter by specific reference to the enumerated instance(s) for which executive sessions may be held.TIP: There is no executive session instance to “discuss personnel matters” or to “meet with the Board’s attorney.”Executive Session Meeting Notices must also state the subject matter by specific reference to the enumerated instance(s) for which executive sessions may be held. So, as an example, your meeting notice might state that the board is holding an executive session on August 31st at 6:00 p.m. in Conference Room B of “Library Name” pursuant to IC (b)(2) to discuss pending litigation.
12Open Door Laws Meeting Notice Requirements, ctd. TIP: Notice requirement does not apply to reconvened meetings (except executive sessions) where announcement of the date, time, and place of the reconvened meeting is made at the original meeting and is recorded in the memoranda and minutes thereof and there is no change in the agendaSpecific times are required on your meeting notices so if you board is having an executive session and an open meeting on the same day, they must post a specific time for each meeting. The notice cannot, for example, say “Executive Session at 6:00 with regular open meeting to follow.”Another tip is that the notice requirement does not apply to reconvened meetings (except executive sessions) where announcement of the date, time and place of the reconvened meeting is made at the original meeting and is recorded in the meeting memoranda or minutes and there is no change in the agenda.
13Open Door Laws Posting & Delivery of Notice Notice must be posted at agency’s principal office or at meeting placeThe agency must also deliver notice to all news media that deliver by December 31st an annual written request for such notices.Tip: The delivery of notice to news media is not “posting” even if the media publish the notice or advertise the meeting.If a specific news agency sends the library a written request asking to be provided with the library’s meeting notices and that request is provided before December 31st, then beginning January 1 and for that entire subsequent year, the library has to specifically provide meeting notices to the news agency in addition to posting the meeting notices.The library can send the notice to the news agency via , regular mail, or via fax.If the board has all the meetings planned out for the year, it is acceptable to provide notice of the entire year’s meetings in one notice but when any additional meetings are called, the library must provide the news agency with notice of those additional meetings.
14Open Door Laws Posting & Delivery of Notice, ctd. IF Library adopts policy: the library must also deliver notice to any person (other than news media) who delivers by December 31st an annual written request for such notices.library decides if these notices will be provided via or by publishing notice 48 hours in advance on library websiteThe library board may adopt a policy that will require the library to deliver meeting notices to others who request to be specifically notified. If a library adopts this policy, that means that anyone, not just news media, would be able to send in a written request to be personally notified about the library’s meetings. Just like with the news media, the person would have to submit the request in writing by December 31st in order to be notified of library meetings the subsequent year.The library can opt to provide the notices via or just by publishing the notices 48 hours in advance on the library website.These notices do not take the place of the meeting notices that must be posted.
15Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (ODL § 4) The ODL does not require an agency to utilize an agenda.If the governing body utilizes an agenda, the agenda must be posted outside the meeting before the meeting begins.The ODL does not provide a specific deadline for posting the agenda.The Open Door laws do not require public agencies to use an agenda. However, if the board does use an agenda, the agenda must be posted outside the meeting before the meeting begins. There is no time requirement for posting the agenda other than that is posted before the meeting begins.Some libraries choose to combine meeting notices and the agenda in one posted document, in which case the agenda would need to be posted 48 hours in advance with the meeting notice.
16Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (cont.) An agency may deviate from its posted agenda unless a specific statute or board bylaws provide otherwise.TIP: A final action adopted by reference to agenda number or item alone is void (e.g. “All in favor of item IV?”)A couple tips:An agency may deviate from its posted agenda unless a specific statute or board bylaws provide otherwise.Also, final action adopted by reference to agenda number or item number alone is void. For example, you cannot say, “all in favor of item IV on the agenda.”
17Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (cont.) ODL does not require minutesMemoranda must be kept as the meeting progresses and must contain:Date, time and location of meetingMembers present and absentThe general substance of all matters, proposed, discussed, or decidedA record of all votes taken, by individual members if there is a roll callThe Open Door Law does not require the library take minutes; however basic meeting memoranda must be kept as the meeting progresses and must contain at minimum:Date, time and location of meetingMembers present and absentThe general substance of all matters, proposed, discussed, or decided andA record of all votes taken, by individual members if there is a roll call
18Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (cont.) Executive Sessions – memoranda must include:Date, time and location of meetingMembers present and absentthe subject matter considered must be identified by specific reference to the enumerated instance or instances for which public notice was given.The memoranda and minutes must certify no other matter was discussed.A memoranda is required for executive sessions as well but there are slightly different requirements. You must have at minimum:Date, time and location of meetingMembers present and absentthe subject matter considered must be identified by specific reference and citation to the law just like with the public notice.The memoranda and minutes must certify no other matter was discussed.
19Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (cont.) Remote Attendees – memoranda must include additional items:Name of each member who was physically present at the meeting; andName of each member who participated in the meeting using a telephone, computer, video conferencing, or any other electronic means of communications.If there are board members attending a meeting remotely, there are additional requirements for the meeting memoranda. The memoranda or minutes must state which members were present in person, which were present remotely; and which were absent altogether..
20Open Door Laws Teleconferencing or videoconferencing of meetings Generally, a member of a governing body who is not physically present but communicates by electronic or telephonic means may not vote and may not be counted presentSome specific statutes may provide exceptionsAnd with remote attendees, keep in mind that generally, if a board member attends a meeting remotely using some sort of electronic equipment, that board member cannot vote or be counted present for the purpose of establishing a quorum
21Open Door Laws Agenda and Memoranda (cont.) The memoranda are to be available within a reasonable period of time after the meeting.The minutes, if any, are to be open for inspection and copying.TIP: Draft minutes of a public meeting are subject to disclosure despite not being in final form or adopted by the governing body. (Formal Opinion 98- FC-8)The memoranda or minutes are to be available for public inspection and copying within a reasonable period of time after the meeting.Draft minutes of a public meeting are subject to disclosure despite not being in final form or adopted by the governing body. (Formal Opinion 98-FC-8)
22Open Door LawsA right of the public to record meetings, found at I.C. § (a) includes the right to record the meeting (audio or video). Berry v. Peoples Broadcasting Corp., 547 N.E.2d 231 (Ind. 1989).TIP: A governing body may place reasonable restrictions on the use of such equipment, but may not ban the use of audio or video recorders.Sometimes we are asked if the board has the authority to prohibit the public from recording board meetings and they cannot.Indiana law does allow the public to record the library board meetings but the board does have the authority to set reasonable guidelines to ensure that the use of such recording equipment is not disruptive to the board or other meeting attendees.
23Open Door Laws Is Electronic Mail a Meeting? Indiana courts have not addressed the issue, but the Virginia high court ruled that communications did not constitute a meeting. Beck v. Shelton, 593 S.E.2d 195 (Va. 2004) (no simultaneity)Previous PACs have opined that is not a “meeting” under the ODLTIP: Keep in mind the APRAAnother frequent question that comes up is whether communications between board members via violates the Open Door laws. I can certainly see how this could be abused and how could be used in a manner to subvert the Open Door laws. However, there is currently no provision in the law that addresses this issue.In fact, the Serial Meetings provision of the Open Door laws specifically states that communications are not considered as being present at a meeting and previous PACs have opined that is not a meeting under ODL.However, you do want to keep in mind that those s would be subject to a public records request and would have to be disclosed under APRA if someone made the appropriate request.Also, with regard to public comment periods: the library is not required by the Open Door law to set aside time for public comment but may be required to set aside time for public comment during other types of meetings pursuant to other laws.
24Access to Public Records Act (“APRA”)Ind. Code § et seq.APRA permits all “persons” access to public records. The word “Person” includes individuals, businesses, other governmental entities, etc.Next is APRA which again is the Access to Public Records Act. Just like with the Open Door laws, the general policy behind APRA is to afford the public with transparency with regard to government activity. APRA accomplishes this by providing that the public can have access to public records of government entities.
25Access to Public Records Act What is a Public Record I.C“Public Record” means any writing, paper, report, study, map, photograph, book, card, tape recording, or other material that is created, received, retained, maintained, or filed by or with a public agency andwhich is generated on paper, paper substitutes, photographic media, chemically based media, magnetic or machine readable media, electronically stored data, or any other material, regardless of form or characteristics.Indiana Court of Appeals has added to this definition materials created for or on behalf of a public agency.“Public record is defined very broadly on purpose and does include virtually any document (digital or physical) that is created, sent, or received as a part of the library’s normal course of operations.However, there is a Public Access Counselor opinion that holds that library’s “collection” is not “public records” for the purpose of this law.
26Access to Public Records Act General RuleAny person may inspect and copy the public records of any public agency during the regular business hours of the agency, except as provided in section 4 (confidential records).A request (1) must identify the record with reasonable particularity; (2) may be, at the discretion of the agency, in writing or on agency form.Any person may inspect and copy the public records of any public agency during the regular business hours of the agency, unless the records are confidential.“Inspect” includes the right to make notes, abstracts and memoranda, and in the case of aural public records, to listen and manually transcribe or make notes.“Copy” includes photocopying, transcribing by hand, duplicating electronic data onto disk, and reproducing by any other means, including by digital camera or handheld scanner.APRA does not require any particular format or language for record requests but the request does have to be specific enough that the library can tell what records the person want to see or copy.The library board can create a policy that requires record requests to be in writing or on a particular library form.
27Access to Public Records Act General Rule ctd.The agency shall either make the requested copy (if the agency has reasonable access to a copy machine) or allow the person to make a copy on the agency’s equipment oron the person’s own equipment.Electronic data storage systems-- agency shall make reasonable efforts to provide copy of data to a person if medium requested is compatible with agency’s system.The agency shall either make the requested copy (if the agency has reasonable access to a copy machine) or allow the person to make a copy on the agency’s equipment or on the person’s own equipment.
28Access to Public Records Act Library’s Responsibility Under APRARespond to requests in person or over telephone within 24 hours of receiptRespond to mailed, faxed, or ed requests within 7 calendar days of receiptBest practice is to respond in writing to all requestsLibrary’s Responsibility Under APRABest practice is to respond in writing to all requests so the library has documentation of how requests were handledLibrary must respond to requests made in person or over telephone within 24 hours of receiptLibrary must respond to mailed, faxed, or ed requests within 7 calendar days of receiptBy responding, this does not necessarily mean the library must produce the records, it simply means the library must acknowledge the request, give the requestor some idea whether or not the agency may have records responsive to the request, whether there will be a cost if the requestor wants copies, and some indication when the requestor will hear from the library again regarding the request.
29Access to Public Records Act Produce records in reasonable time; communication with person requesting is keyIf time for production will be lengthy, provide groups of records in the interim as they are available.The library is required by law to produce the records in a reasonable amount of time considering facts/circumstances;With voluminous requests, communication with person requesting is key.If time for production will be lengthy, provide groups of records in the interim as they are available.Also, remember that the library does not have to create records (ie. lists, charts, etc.) if there is no record responsive to the person’s request.
30Access to Public Records Act If denying access to records;respond to applicant in writingstate reason for denial with citation to authoritygive name and title or position of person responsible for denial.Agency bears the burden of proving the records are excepted from disclosure under the APRA or other applicable authority.If denying access to records;Oral requests may be denied orally as well but probably not best practice. ICWhen public records requests are presented in writing:The Library should respond to the requestor in writing &state reason for denial with citation to specific law that makes document confidential &give name and title or position of person responsible for denial.The library bears the burden of proving the records are excepted from disclosure under the APRA or other applicable authority.
31Access to Public Records Act Exemptions to Disclosure:I.C. §4(a) Mandatory Confidential CategoriesDeclared confidential by state statuteDeclared confidential by federal lawDeclared confidential by public agency ruleAs I have already indicated, there are some types of records that are exempt by law and some that can be exempt at the discretion of the public agency.IC (a) has a fairly lengthy list of the types of documents that are exempt by lawSome of which include records…Declared confidential by state or federal lawRecords Declared confidential by a rule adopted by a public agency that had specific statutory authority to create such rule; andRecords containing confidential financial information received upon request from a personSocial Security numbers and so forth.You can review the law to see the entire list.
32Access to Public Records Act 4(b) Discretionary categories:Attorney work productInter or intra-agency advisory or deliberative material that are expressions of opinion or speculative in nature and communicated for purpose of decision-makingMaterials prepared for executive session (with some exceptions)IC (b) lists records that could be considered exempt at the discretion of the library:Some examples are:Work product of attorney hired by public agencyInter or intra-agency deliberative material which are expressions of opinion or speculative in nature and communicated for purpose of decision-making (i.e. staff/mgmt. recommendations)Materials prepared for executive session (with some exceptions)
34Access to Public Records Act 4(b) Discretionary categories ctd.:Personnel file information may be withheld, but some portions must be disclosed:name, compensation, job title, business address, business telephone number,job description, education and training, previous work experience, dates of first and last employment;Some information from personnel files may be withheld but the slide has list of information that must be disclosed: for example,-name, compensation, job title, business address, business telephone number-job description, education and training, previous work experience,-dates of first and last employment;
35Access to Public Records Act information relating to status of formal charges against employee; andthe factual basis for a disciplinary action in which final action has been taken and that resulted in the employee being suspended, demoted, or discharged.* Personnel file must always be made available to the affected employee or applicant-information relating to status of formal charges against employee; and-the factual basis for a disciplinary action in which final action has been taken and that resulted in the employee being suspended, demoted, or dischargedKeep in mind that the entire personnel file must always be made available to the affected employee or employee’s representativeAgain, you can take a look at the law for additional exemptions…
36Access to Public Records Act FeesMay not charge to search or inspect recordsBoard determines copy fee under I.C. § guidelinesLibrary may require advance paymentThe library may not charge a fee to search or inspect records.Fees can be charged for copying and the guidelines are set forth in I.C. §Basically, the board sets fee andthe fee may not exceed the greater of 10 cents for b/w copies and 25 cents for color copies or actual cost to library to make copyAs used in this subsection, "actual cost" means the cost of paper and the per-page cost for use of copying or facsimile equipment and does not include labor costs or overhead costs. A fee established under this subsection must be uniform throughout the public agency and uniform to all purchasers.Library may require advance payment before providing the copies
37Access to Public Records Act Common ProblemsImproperly requiring a subpoena from the requesterDenying access to entire record when records contain partially disclosable and partially non-disclosable informationNot responding within prescribed timeDenying access to records but not indicating the statutory authorityCommon Problems Reported by Prior Public Access CounselorImproperly requiring a subpoena from the requesterDenying access to entire record when records contain partially disclosable and partially non-disclosable information – library should redact confidential informationNot responding within prescribed timeDenying access to records but not indicating the statutory authority
38Access to Public Records Act Common Problems, ctd.Not regularly communicating with requester when the request is voluminous and agency is taking time to review and compile recordsRequiring requester to indicate why he/she wants the recordsAssuming certain records are confidential or proprietary absent legal authorityNot regularly communicating with requester when the request is voluminous and agency is taking time to review and compile recordsRequiring the requester to indicate why he/she wants the recordsAssuming certain records are confidential or proprietary absent legal authority
39APRA & ODL PAC Enforcement Provisions Formal Complaints I.C. §A person may file a complaint with the public access counselor alleging a denial of a right under APRA or ODL.The PAC sends formal complaint to the agency for response and issues a formal advisory opinion within 30 days.When in doubt, the State Library can usually answer questions regarding the Open Door law and APRA. The Public Access Counselor (PAC) is also available to issue advice or advisory opinions.The PAC also handles complaints.I.C. § sets out complaint information if someone wants to file a formal complaint with the PACA person may file a complaint with the public access counselor alleging a denial of a right under APRA or ODL.Complaint filed with the PAC must be filed within 30 days of the denial of access to a public record or within 30 days of finding out that a meeting was held by the agency in secret or without proper noticeThe PAC sends the formal complaint to the agency for response and issues a formal advisory opinion within 30 days (the opinion will be issued in 7 days if the request qualifies for priority treatment (62 IAC 1)).
40APRA & ODL Enforcement Provisions, ctd. PAC Enforcement AuthorityOpinions are advisory onlyLibrary is required to cooperate with PAC in any investigation or proceeding (I.C. § )Attorney fees, costs, and reasonable expenses of litigation are preserved for prevailing plaintiffs in a lawsuitAdvisory opinions are not binding on the public agency or court; also if suit commences prior to PAC issuing opinion, the PAC loses jurisdiction and will not issue an opinion.If a person files a complaint with the PAC before filing suit in court, attorneys fees, court costs and reasonable litigations expenses can be recovered.
41Lawsuits (I.C. § 5-14-1.5-7; I.C. § 5-14-3-9) Any person may file a lawsuit in court to compel the agency to produce a record, declare an action void, or enjoin future violations.If a person prevails in court and has received an advisory opinion from the PAC prior to going to court, the person shall be awarded reasonable attorney’s fees, court costs, and other reasonable costs of litigation.Any person may file a lawsuit to compel the agency to produce a record or declare void an action that occurred in an improperly advertised or held meeting.Complaint must be timely filed (within 30 days of offense or within 30 days of date plaintiff should have known of the offense) and before delivery of warrants, notes, bonds or other obligations if the relief sought if granted would have the effect of nullifying those obligations.Complaint must allege denial of access (which includes library’s lack of responsiveness).The prevailing party gets reasonable attorney’s fees, court costs, and other reasonable costs of litigation if the PAC previously issued an opinion on the issue and the PAC’s opinion also found in favor of the same party the court did.
42Lawsuits (I.C. § 5-14-1.5-7.5; I.C. § 5-14-3-9.5) As of July 1, 2012, courts may impose monetary penalties on public agencies, their officers & management level employees if the public agency violates APRA or the Open Door.The PAC must have first issued an advisory opinion stating the agency violated the public access laws before lawsuit was filedAs of July 1, 2012, courts may impose monetary penalties on public agencies, their officers & management level employees if the public agency violates APRA or the Open Door.The PAC must have first issued an advisory opinion stating the agency violated the public access laws before lawsuit was filed.
43Lawsuits (I.C. § 5-14-1.5-7; I.C. § 5-14-3-9) Management level employee protected if acting at the direction of officer; alsoIt is a defense to the imposition of a civil penalty if the individual was acting in reliance of:Opinion of attorneyOpinion of Indiana Attorney GeneralCivil penalties would be in addition to any criminal penalties that might be involved and the civil penalties start at $100 for the first violation and nor more than $500 for each additional violation.The library is responsible for penalties issued against the library. Individual employees or directors are responsible for penalties issued against them as individuals.Management level employee protected from individual fines if acting at the direction of officer.Examples of violations can be having improper executive sessions, charging too much for copies, non-responsiveness to public record requests, failing to create meeting memoranda, etc.It is a defense to the imposition of a civil penalty if the individual was acting in reliance of:Opinion of attorneyOpinion of Indiana Attorney General
44Public Access Counselor 402 West Washington Street, W470Indianapolis, INPhone:Fax:Visit for the Handbook on Indiana’s Public Access Laws, advisory opinions, and other resources.Again, the State Library can assist with questions but don’t forget you can also contact the Public Access Counselor if you have a questions or concern related to the public access laws.The Public Access Counselor also has a handbook on Indiana’s public access laws that is in very easy to read form, and includes examples and tips. You can find that handbook on the Public Access Counselor’s website.That concludes this webinar. As a reminder, my contact information is on the first slide if you have any questions or comments about this presentation.