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OML-AO-5341

BY EMAIL

From:   dos.sm.Coog.InetCoog
Sent:    Monday, January 28, 2013 2:36 PM
To:      
Subject:           RE: (no subject)

            It appears that you may be mixing separate elements of the Open Meetings Law.

            First, section 106 specifies that minutes of open meetings must be prepared and made available within two weeks.  There is nothing in the law requiring that minutes be approved.  If it is the practice to do so and two weeks have passed, it has been advised that the minutes be made available within that time and marked “draft” or “preliminary”, for example.

            Second, a new provision, section 103(e) of the Open Meetings Law, pertains to records scheduled to be discussed in public during an upcoming meeting.  In that circumstance, to the extent that the entity is able to do so with reasonable effort, the records scheduled to be discussed in public are supposed to be posted on the entity’s website, and/or made available in response to a FOIL request, prior to the meeting during which they will be discussed. 

            In short, minutes must be prepared and disclosed on request within two weeks.  However, if minutes are not scheduled to be discussed during an open meeting (which is often so, for minutes are frequently approved as a matter of course, without any significant or even anticipated discussion of its content), there would be no obligation to post them online prior to a meeting.

            I hope that the following serves to clarify your understanding and that I have been of assistance.