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f. Tape recording requirements

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  • Alaska

    While the legal requirements of particular municipalities, or other laws, regulations or ordinances may require tape recordings of executive sessions, e.g. Anchorage Municipal Ordinance 2.30.035.B.2, the state Open Meetings Act does not. Executive session tape recording requirements are not addressed by the statute or case law.

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  • Arizona

    There is no requirement that the executive sessions be tape recorded.

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  • Arkansas

    There is no requirement that executive sessions be tape-recorded; however, the practice has been encouraged. Commercial Printing Co. v. Rush, 261 Ark. 468, 549 S.W.2d 790 (1977); Ark. Op. Att’y Gen. No. 74-078. An audio or video tape may not be a record within the meaning of Section 25-19-103(7)(A) of the FOIA because it can be viewed as “the embodiment of the meeting.” Ark. Op. Att’y Gen. No. 91-323. If a tape is treated as a record, it is generally exempt from disclosure, for otherwise the purpose of allowing executive sessions would be thwarted. Id.

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  • California

    Minute books of a closed session may, but need not, consist of a recording of the closed session. Cal. Gov't Code §§ 11126.1 (Bagley-Keene Act); 54957.2 (Brown Act). A plaintiff may ask the court to order a state or legislative body to tape record its closed sessions and preserve them if the court finds that the body has violated the provisions regarding closed sessions. Cal. Gov't Code §§ 11130(b) (Bagley-Keene Act); 54960(b) (Brown Act). The tapes will then be subject to discovery procedures outlined in each Act if the entity violates the Act in a closed session. Cal. Gov't Code §§ 11130(c)(2) (Bagley-Keene Act); 54960(c)(2) (Brown Act).

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  • Colorado

    Discussion in an executive session of a state or local public body shall be recorded in the same manner and media that the body uses to record minutes of open meetings. An electronic recording satisfies the requirement. See Gumina v. City of Sterling, 119 P.3d 527 (Colo. App. 2004).

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  • Connecticut

    There are no specific provisions regarding the tape recording of executive sessions.

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  • Delaware

    While there are no tape recording requirements, tape recordings of meetings are public records and, like written minutes, are subject to public disclosure unless exempt. See Chem. Indus. Council of Del., Inc. v. State Coastal Zone Indus. Control Bd., 1994 WL 274295 (Del. Ch. May 19, 1994). See also Del. Op. Att'y Gen., No. 00-ib19 (Nov. 8, 2000) (requiring that audio tapes be made available to the requesting party).

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  • District of Columbia

    Whenever feasible, meetings must be recorded electronically. Whenever recording is not feasible, detailed minutes of the meeting must be kept.  D.C. Code Ann. § 2-578.

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  • Georgia

    The Act does not require that agencies tape record executive sessions.  But the Act does require that agencies file with the minutes of any meeting at which the agency met in executive session a notarized affidavit, executed by the person who presided over the meeting or, if the agency’s policy so provides, every member of the agency in attendance, stating under oath that the executive session was devoted to matters within a specified exception to the Act.  § 50-14-4(a).

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  • Hawaii

    While there are no tape recording requirements for executive meetings, unless the Director of the Office of Information waives the requirement, the board must videotape limited meetings and make the videotape available at the next regular meeting. Haw. Rev. Stat. § 92-3.1(c).

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  • Idaho

    In State v. Yzaguirre, 144 Idaho 471, 163 P.3d 1183 (2007), the Idaho Supreme Court held that Idaho Code § 67-2344(1)’s [now 74-205(1)’s] requirement that written minutes of all meetings be taken does not include an audio recording of a meeting.  Id., 144 Idaho at 477-478.

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  • Illinois

    The Act requires that public bodies keep a verbatim record of all their closed meetings in the form of an audio or video recording. 5 ILCS 120/2.06(a). However, this record generally is not open for public inspection. 5 ILCS 120/2.06(e).

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  • Indiana

    There is no requirement that executive sessions be tape recorded.

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  • Iowa

    "A governmental body shall . . . tape record all of the closed session." Iowa Code § 21.5(5).

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  • Kentucky

    The Open Meetings Act does not address the audio or video recording of meetings.

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  • Maine

    There is no requirement that executive sessions be tape recorded.

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  • Maryland

    There is no requirement that closed sessions be tape recorded; however, sessions may be tape recorded by a public body. § 3-306(c)(3)(i).

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  • Massachusetts

    None. Even if meeting is gratuitously recorded, there is no public right of access to the tape. Perryman v. School Committee of Boston, 17 Mass. App. Ct. 346, 458 N.E.2d 748 (1983).

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  • Michigan

    Audiotape of a closed session meeting of city council was part of the minutes of the session meeting, and thus audiotape was required under OMA to be filed with the city clerk for retention, despite claim that retention of such audiotapes would be overly burdensome; audiotape of public meetings could be disposed of once written minutes were officially adopted, and audiotapes of closed meetings was sufficiently rare to not be overly burdensome. Kitchen v. Ferndale City Council, 253 Mich.App. 115, 654 N.W.2d 918 (2002).

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  • Montana

    There are no statutory or case law decisions requiring tape recordings of closed sessions.

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  • Nebraska

    The Open Meetings Act does not require a public body to tape record closed sessions.

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  • Nevada

    Closed meetings must be tape-recorded. NRS 241.035(4). The tape shall be made available to the Attorney General upon request. The tape must be retained for at least one year after the adjournment of the meeting at which it was transcribed. The tape must be made available to the public during the time the record is retained. NRS 241.035(4)(b).

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  • New Hampshire

    The Statute does not address this issue.

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  • New Jersey

    There is no requirement that a closed session be tape recorded; minutes of a closed session must be kept "to the same extent as a public session." N.J.S.A. 10:4-14.

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  • New Mexico

    No statutory requirement.  Most bodies tape record as a matter of practice, and the tape recording is a public document.  If meetings are recorded, the recording is a matter of public record, and an agency cannot deny access to it on the basis that the recording was not originally required to be made.  New Mexico Attorney General’s Office, Inspection of Public Records Act Compliance Guide, 24-25 (8th ed. 2015).

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  • North Dakota

    All meetings of the governing body of a public entity that are not open to the public must be recorded electronically or on audiotape or videotape. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2(5). The recording must be disclosed pursuant to court order under N.D.C.C. § 44-04-18.11(2) or to the attorney general for the purpose of administrative review under N.D.C.C. § 44-04-21.1. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2(5). The attorney general may not disclose to the public any recording received and must return the recording to the governing body upon completion of the administrative review. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2(5). The recording may be disclosed upon majority vote of the governing body, unless the executive session was required to be confidential. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2(5).
    The right of a person to attend a meeting includes the right to photograph, to record on audiotape or videotape, and to broadcast live on radio or television the portion of the meeting that is not held in executive session, provided that there is no active interference with the conduct of the meeting. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19(3). The exercise of this right may not be dependent upon the prior approval of the governing body. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19(3). However, the governing body may impose reasonable limitations on recording activity to minimize the possibility of disruption of the meeting. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19(3).

    All recordings must be retained for a minimum of six months after the executive session that is the subject of the recording. N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2(5).

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  • Ohio

    The statute contains no provisions authorizing or prohibiting the tape recording of meetings.

    An Ohio Attorney General's Opinion states that audio or video recording of meetings is permissible. 1988 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 88-087.

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  • Oklahoma

    There is no requirement for tape recording executive sessions. 2012 OK AG 24.

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  • Oregon

    The minutes of executive sessions shall be kept and an audio record may serve as the source of such minutes, without the necessity of transcription. ORS 192.650(2).

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  • Tennessee

    No. Although there is no requirement to tape record meetings, such a recording might save the governmental entities actions from being void under the act. In Phan v. Tenn. DOC & Ins., 2017 Tenn. App. LEXIS 153 (March 2, 2017), the court ruled that a vote that was held in public but was not recorded in the minutes was not invalidated because it was not in the minutes because a video recording of the vote was available.

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  • Texas

    The governmental body is required to either keep minutes or make a tape recording of each meeting of the open body. Tex. Gov’t Code§ 551.021(a). The minutes must include the subject of each deliberation and indicate each action taken. Id. at § 551.021(b). Open meeting minutes and tape recordings are public records and shall be made available to the public on proper request. Id. at § 551.022.

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  • Utah

    If a public body holds a closed meeting for purposes other than those set forth in Utah Code sections 52-4-205(1)(a) , (1)(f), or (2), the public body “shall make a recording of the closed portion of the meeting,” and “may keep detailed written minutes that disclose the content of the closed portion of the meeting.” Utah Code § 52-4-206(1), (6). Tape recordings and written minutes of closed meetings are protected records. Id. § 52-4-206(5). In an action challenging the legality of a closed meeting, the court shall review the tape recording or written minutes in camera. Id. § 52-4-304(1)(a). “If the judge determines that the public body violated [the provisions] regarding closed meetings, the judge shall publicly disclose or reveal from the recordings or minutes . . . all information about the portion of the meeting that was illegally closed.” Id. § 52-4-304(2)(b).

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  • Vermont

    Not addressed.

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  • Virginia

    There are no tape recording requirements in the Act.

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  • Washington

    There is no requirement that meetings or minutes be tape recorded, although some agencies customarily do so. Such recordings are subject to the Public Records Act.

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  • West Virginia

    The Open Meetings Act does not require a public agency to tape record either the regular meeting or meetings held in executive session. However, if such a tape is made at an open meeting, it would constitute a public record under the Freedom of Information Act. Veltri v. Charleston Urban Renewal Auth., 178 W. Va. 669, 363 S.E.2d 746 (1987).

    A tape recording of discussions of a public body during an executive session from which the public was excluded may nevertheless be discoverable in civil litigation that does not involve Open Meeting Act claims.

    In State ex rel. Marshall County Commission v. Carter, 225 W. Va. 68, 689 S.E.2d 796 (2010), the West Virginia Court held that “the provision of the Open Governmental Proceedings Act, W. Va. Code §§ 6–9A–1 to 6–9A–12, which recognizes in specific and limited circumstances the right of governing bodies to meet in an executive session which is closed to the public is not intended to prevent the legitimate discovery in a civil action of matters discussed in an executive session which are not otherwise privileged.” Id. at 76, 689 S.E.2d at 804.

    In Carter, the plaintiff sought to discover a tape of an executive session to examine it for evidence that he had been discriminated against because of his disability in violation of the State Human Rights Act.  In holding that the ALJ could order the county to produce the recording, the court stated, “We simply reaffirm the rights of a litigant in a civil action to discover potentially relevant evidence of unlawful conduct arising from an executive session of a government body.” Id. at 76, 689 S.E.2d at 804.

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  • Wyoming

    No statute specifically addresses tape recording at closed meetings or executive sessions.

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