RI Open Meetings Act
Note: Also see the publication by the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns: Compliance With RI’s Open Meetings Acts.
The following is a synopsis of the Notice Requirements as stated in the Rhode Island Opens Meetings Act (RI Gen laws § 42-46):
Annual Notice: All public bodies must provide written notice of regularly scheduled meetings at the beginning of each calendar year. This notice shall include the dates, times, and locations of all meetings, and shall be provided to the public upon request and to the secretary of state at the beginning of each calendar year in accordance with subsection (f). RI Gen. Laws § 42-46-6(a).
Supplemental Notice: In addition to annual notice, public bodies must post supplemental written notice to the public a minimum of forty-eight (48) hours before every scheduled meeting. RI Gen. Laws § 42-46-6(b). The public body must also maintain a copy of this supplemental notice for at least one year and the notice must contain:
(a) the date the notice was posted,
(b) the date of the meeting,
(c) the time of the meeting,
(d) the location of the meeting, and
(e) a statement specifying the nature of the business to be discussed.
Nothing contained herein shall prevent a public body, other than a school committee, from adding additional items to the agenda by majority vote of the members. Said informational items may not be voted upon unless they have been posted in accordance with the provisions of this section. Such additional items shall be for informational purposes only and may not be voted on except where necessary to address an unexpected occurrence that requires immediate action to protect the public or to refer the matter to an appropriate committee or to another body or official.
Posting of Notices: Annual and supplemental notices, at a minimum, must be posted:
(a) at the principal office of the public body holding the meeting, or if no principal office exists, at the building where the meeting is to be held, and
(b) in at least one other prominent location within the government unit.
(c) electronic filing of the notice with the secretary of state pursuant to subsection (f)