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Municipal Minutes

Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Holds Evidence of Bad Faith Through Municipal Actions Sanctionable Under Right-to-Know Law

June 6th, 2022

Pursuant to the Right-to-Know-Law, the Commonwealth Court finds a municipality’s unexcused failure to send requested documents until after the Office of Open Records’ ordered deadline, or with redactions, may demonstrate bad faith warranting an imposition of a civil penalty up to $1,500.

Act 65 of 2021 Amends the Sunshine Act

July 8th, 2021

Act 65 of 2021 will amend the Sunshine Act, 65 Pa. C.S. §§701-716, to require the following: 

Ensuring Government Transparency Under Right to Know During COVID-19

April 8th, 2020

Here is a summary of legal obligations under RIght To Know during this time.

Who Invited That Guy? Tips for Effective Virtual Board Meetings

April 6th, 2020

Here are a few tips to try and limit the opportunity for disruption while preserving the public’s right to attend and participate in school board meetings.

COVID-19’s Impact on Municipal Debt Issuance

March 30th, 2020

Under Pennsylvania’s Local Government Unit Debt Act, local government units are required to file applications or debt proceedings with the DCED.  In fact, local government units must secure approval from DCED prior to closing on any debt transactions involving new money capital projects or refundings/refinancings. 

Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Expands Internal Predecisional Exception Under Right To Know Law

June 10th, 2019

In Finnerty v. Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, the City of Chester had been determined to be a financially distressed municipality under the Municipalities Financial Recovery Act (Act 47).

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Clarifies Limits on Private Meeting Discussions By Public Entities

January 21st, 2014

December 17, 2013 decision in Smith v. Township of Richmond affirms Commonwealth Court ruling in favor of Township and hones in on the nature of “deliberations.” (See MM September 2012 for additional details on the case.)

One Person’s Trash Is Another Person’s Treasure: Dealing with Former Tenant’s Abandoned Property

April 4th, 2013

Until recently, there was scant legal guidance on how landlords should dispose of former tenants’ abandoned personal property.