Division of Archives and Records Service

2013 Public Notice Website changes explained

Joseph Sharp
April 24, 2013

     When the Utah Public Notice Website (UPNW) was launched in 2008, government agencies were required to post on the site only notices and meeting agenda prior to open and public meetings. The requirement of what “public information” must be posted has been expanded.

     Website enhancements now permit public bodies to attach approved minutes, audio recordings, and other materials to the original public notice posted on the UPN Website in compliance with 2013 amendments to the Open and Public Meetings Act and the Utah Technology Governance Act. These new provisions go into effect May 14, 2013.

     State law now requires a state public body (defined as “an administrative, advisory, executive, or legislative body of the state”) to post “minutes that have been approved by the public body that held the open meeting” within three business days after approving the written minutes. A copy of the approved minutes must also be available at the public body’s primary office. Prior to approval, state public bodies are required to make the pending minutes (draft form) available to the public “within 30 days after holding the open meeting that is the subject of the pending minutes.” Pending or draft minutes are NOT required to be posted, only made available to the public.

     Supported file formats for attachments include PDF – Portable Document Format | .DOC – Word Document | .DOCX – 2007/2010 Word Document | .WPD – Word Perfect Document | .RTF – Rich Text Format | .XLS – Excel Spreadsheet | .XLSX – Excel Spreadsheet | .ZIP – Compressed file | .DOCM – Open XML Formatted file.

     In addition, a copy of any public materials distributed at the open meeting must also be posted to the website and be available for inspection in the agency office.

     Audio recordings made during an open meeting must be made available via the website within three business days either by posting them as an attachment or by linking to a website where they are posted. The recording is to be “a complete and unedited record of all open portions of the meeting from the commencement of the meeting through adjournment of the meeting; and be properly labeled or identified with the date, time, and place of the meeting.” The site supports audio file attachments in .MP3, .wav, and FTR Gold formats. The maximum file size is 200 MB.

     The provisions for posting approved minutes and handouts on the UPNW also apply to a specified local public body (defined as “a legislative body of a county, city, or town”). Audio recordings must be available in the office but are not required to be posted on the website.

      A city of the fifth class (population between 1,000 and 10,000) or a town (population under 1,000) is encouraged to comply with the posting of minutes and public materials but is not required to comply until January 1, 2015.

     For questions about the Utah Public Notice Website, please contact Glen Fairclough, [email protected], 801-531-3841.