Pennsylvania State Capitol. Pennsylvania State Capitol. Photo credit: Zack Frank/

State Reps. Mindy Fee, R-Lancaster, and Tina M. Davis, D-Bucks, say they plan to propose an amendment to Pennsylvania’s Sunshine Act to exempt agency discussions of security and emergency preparedness from open meeting requirements.

The Pennsylvania Sunshine Act requires agencies to “deliberate and take official action on agency business in an open and public meeting,” according to the Office of Open Records. Meetings require prior notice and the public can attend, participate and comment before an agency takes official action. According to the office, any state or local government and its subunits that perform an “essential government function and have authority to take official action” are subject to the act.

In their memo released on March 12, the two representatives stated that they are aware of school security as an important issue in the world “given the most recent events in Connecticut.” In 2012, 20 first-graders and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, were murdered.

Fee and Davis said their proposed exemption for security and emergency discussions would be used to promote safety for sensitive matters “without fear that an outside[r] will use this information to the detriment of the school system.”

— Victoria Hudgins, of the Law Weekly •