The League, working with bipartisan support in both the state Senate and House, is happy to announce the introduction of Senate Bill 1108 and House Bill 6207. The legislation would amend the Open Meetings Act (OMA) to allow for electronic “virtual” meetings to take place without an executive order suspending some requirements, under specific circumstances. The changes would allow for remote participation during a statewide or locally declared state of emergency, or for a public body member with a medical condition. The changes, if enacted, would allow for in person, remote or a combination (hybrid) meeting to take place when applicable.
Since introduction, SB 1108 quickly received two hearings in the senate local government committee. A S-3 substitute was adopted and then reported out last Thursday with recommendation that it pass and receive immediate effect. The bill now awaits action on the senate floor. Upon introduction, HB 6207 was referred to the house committee on government operations where it awaits a hearing.
We will provide updates as they become available, but as this moves forward we ask that you contact your legislators and urge passage of this OMA amendment. With the uncertainty created last week, local units of government need clear statutory authority to be established.
You can find contact information for your state Senator HERE and your state Representative HERE.
Jennifer Rigterink is a legislative associate for the League handling economic development, land use and municipal services issues. She can be reached at [email protected] or 517-908-0305.