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House votes to make agencies post agendas before meetings

Published January 16. 2020 01:25PM

HARRISBURG (AP) — The Pennsylvania House voted Tuesday to force public agencies to post agendas on their websites at least a day before the meetings when they are voted on.

State representatives unanimously approved the proposed amendments to the state Sunshine Act.

The prime sponsor, Rep. Aaron Bernstine, R-Lawrence, said the bill will help ensure governments do not operate in the shadows.

“When our citizens know what will be discussed at a meeting ahead of time, they can better participate in a government in a meaningful way,” Bernstine said.

Officials would not be allowed to vote on anything that was not on the posted agenda, except when an emergency has arisen that threatens life or property or when the issue at hand is considered extremely minor and does not involve spending money. Items could also be added to agendas during meetings by a majority vote.

The bill would require that agendas be posted at agency offices and be available to the public before meetings start. The proposal was sent to the state Senate for its consideration.

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