Chamber Supports Open Meeting Legislation

Legislation under consideration in the PA House of Representatives would require that agendas for public meetings be posted on agency websites at least 24 hours prior to the meeting. With a few exceptions, items not on the published agenda could not be voted upon. The Chamber’s Board of Directors recently expressed support for the bill.

House Bill 1531 would apply to any public agency, including local governments, with a publicly accessible website. Emergency business or minor issues that do not involve the expenditure of funds or entering into a contract or agreement that arise after a published agenda could be acted upon. The legislation was introduced last summer and was reported out of the House Rules Committee in June of this year.

The Chamber Board voted unanimously to support the bill to allow the public to be better informed and offer input on issues. “While meetings of public agencies are open to the public, attending numerous meetings without knowing what is going to be considered is burdensome and typically less productive,” said Fred Gaffney, Chamber president. “Posting agendas online in advance will allow concerned citizens and organizations, including the Chamber, to be better prepared to comment and be more efficient in the decision making process.”