Sunshine Memo 11-12
Amendment of Agenda
Requester sought an advisory opinion on whether the
Honolulu City Council violated the Sunshine Law by amending the
agenda of its Executive Matters Committee meeting to consider Resolution
OIP found that the Council’s agenda amendment
did not violate the Sunshine Law.
The Sunshine Law provides that a filed agenda may
be amended to add an item by a two-thirds recorded vote of all members
to which the board is entitled; “provided that no item shall
be added to the agenda if it is of reasonably major importance and
action thereon by the board will affect a significant number of
persons.” HRS § 92-7(d). Determination of whether an
item “is of reasonably major importance” and when board
action thereon will “affect a significant number of persons”
is fact-specific and must be made on a case-by-case basis.
Resolution 07-168 authorized the Council Chair to
enter into an agreement with Olelo Community Television (Olelo)
relating to the televised broadcast of Council meetings, hearings
and other activities in substantially the same form as the exhibit
attached to the resolution. The Chair was further authorized to
amend the agreement as necessary, including amendment of the “distribution”
to be made by Olelo to the City under the contract.
The authority given to the Chair under Resolution
07-168 was to try to obtain a larger distribution from Olelo under
a contract in which Olelo was paying the City $44,000 for programming.
Under these circumstances, the contract amount being paid the City
and the latitude being afforded the Chair was relatively small.
OIP thus found that amendment of the agenda to add this item to
enter into and negotiate any additional distribution was not of
reasonably major importance and that action on that item would not
affect a significant number of persons.