ACLU calls for changes to state’s Open Meetings law

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is calling for revisions to the state’s Open Meetings law after it says a review found numerous violations.

A report released Monday says a review of agendas for every public meeting held the week of October 5 revealed several violations that make it hard for the public to participate.

The report says many agendas listed generic items to be discussed and failed to adequately explain them.

It also says the statute’s 48-hour-notice requirement was undermined by agencies using weekends to comply within that timeframe. The ACLU says this gives the public little time to learn about upcoming meetings.

The organization is recommending that generic items be prohibited and that the public be given more than 48 hours’ notice about meetings.

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