Bill S1490-2009

Allows open meetings to be photographed, broadcast and recorded by audio or video means subject to reasonable rules

Allows open meetings to be photographed, broadcast and recorded by audio or video means subject to reasonable rules governing the location of equipment and personnel.

Details

Actions

  • Jan 6, 2010: REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS
  • Feb 2, 2009: REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS

Memo

 BILL NUMBER : S1490

TITLE OF BILL : An act to amend the public officers law, in relation to open meetings of public bodies

PURPOSE : To allow meetings of a public body to be recorded, photographed and broadcast.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS :

Section 1 -- Legislative findings.

Section 2 -- Establishes that any meeting that is required to be open to the public must also be able to be recorded, videotaped or broadcast. Additionally, this section gives public bodies the power to adopt roles to reasonably regulate the recording, videotaping or broadcasting of public meetings.

Section 3 -- Establishes the effective date of this act.

JUSTIFICATION :

Since 1977, the proceedings of public bodies have been open to the public. This bill would allow the public to record public proceedings as long as their activities are not disruptive; it would also allow the public body to regulate these actions if it feels the situations warrant it. Advances in technology have made it possible to record the proceedings of a meeting without detracting from the deliberative process.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY :

2007-2008: A.1111/S.2053 2006: A.9812/S.7196 2005: A.90 2003-2004: A.6082 2001-2002: A.6750

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS : None.

LOCAL FISCAL IMPLICATIONS : None.

EFFECTIVE DATE : On the sixtieth day after it shall have become a law.

Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 1490 2009-2010 Regular Sessions IN SENATE February 2, 2009 ___________
Introduced by Sens. DeFRANCISCO, GOLDEN, GRIFFO, SEWARD -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Investigations and Government Operations AN ACT to amend the public officers law, in relation to open meetings of public bodies THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Legislative findings. It is the policy of this state that all public business "be performed in an open and public manner and that the citizens of this state be fully aware and able to observe the performance of public officials and attend and listen to the deliber- ations and decisions that go into the making of public policy". (Public Officers Law, S 100) However, because most citizens are unable to attend first-hand the meetings of public bodies, they rely upon the printed press and broadcast media to act as their agent in seeking out and communicating these events. Advances in technology now allow meetings to be photographed, broadcast and recorded in a non-disruptive manner, and these advances should be utilized to give effect to the policy of open and public governmental proceedings. S 2. Section 103 of the public officers law is amended by adding a new subdivision (d) to read as follows: (D) 1. ANY MEETING OF A PUBLIC BODY THAT IS OPEN TO THE PUBLIC SHALL BE OPEN TO BEING PHOTOGRAPHED, BROADCAST OR RECORDED BY AUDIO OR VIDEO MEANS. AS USED HEREIN THE TERM "BROADCAST" SHALL ALSO INCLUDE THE TRANS- MISSION OF SIGNALS BY CABLE. 2. A PUBLIC BODY MAY ADOPT RULES REASONABLY GOVERNING THE LOCATION OF EQUIPMENT AND PERSONNEL USED TO PHOTOGRAPH, BROADCAST OR RECORD A MEET- ING SO AS TO CONDUCT ITS PROCEEDINGS IN AN ORDERLY MANNER. S 3. This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have become a law.

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