Open Meetings

State law requires most state and municipal departments, agencies, committees and councils to file notices and agendas of upcoming meetings with the RI Secretary of State. Most meeting notices must be filed at least 48 hours before the date and time of the meeting. Only decision-making public bodies within the executive branch of state government and all decision-making state public boards, agencies and corporations, are required to electronically file meeting minutes with the Secretary of State's office. Meeting minutes must be filed no more than 35 days after a meeting. Public bodies that are advisory in nature are exempt from the requirement. Most meetings held without at least 48-hours notice will not comply with state law. Emergency meetings may be held with less than 48-hours notice under certain circumstances. However, even emergency meetings must have an electronic notice filed, even if it is with less than 48-hours notice.

The Open Government Unit investigates complaints against public bodies in Rhode Island for violations of the Open Meetings Act and/or the Access to Public Records Act. If you believe your rights under one of these laws have been violated, we encourage you to file a complaint with this Department. You should send your complaint, and any supporting materials to:

Lisa Pinsonneault, Special Assistant Attorney General

Rhode Island Office of Attorney General

150 South Main Street

Providence, RI 02903