Original changes effective 26 Aug 1967 by session law 1967, 251.

Chapter 91-A

Access to Public Records

91-A:1 Definition of Public Proceedings.

The term "public proceedings" as used in this chapter means the transactions of any functions affecting any or all citizens of the state by any board or commission of any state agency or authority, and all meetings of any board, commission, agency, or authority, of any county, town, municipal corporation, school district, or other political subdivision.

91-A:2 Meetings Open to the Public.

All public proceedings are open to the public, and all persons are permitted to attend any meetings of these bodies or agencies, and minutes of such meetings shall be promptly recorded and open to public inspection, except as provided by section 5 of this chapter. If the charter of any city or guide lines set down by the appointing authority requires broader public access to official meetings and records than herein described, such charter provisions or guide lines shall take precedence over the requirements of this chapter.

91-A:3 Executive Sessions.

I. Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed to prevent these bodies or agencies from holding executive sessions but any decisions made during any executive session must be recorded and made available for public inspection promptly, and no ordinances, orders, rules, resolutions, regulations, contracts, appointments or other official actions shall be finally approved in executive session. The conditions of this section do not apply to executive sessions of the committees of the general court.

II. Exceptions. A body, or agency, may exclude the public when it is considering or acting upon the following matters:

(a) The dismissal, promotion, or compensation of any public employee or the disciplining of such employee, or the investigating of any charges against him, unless the employee affected requests an open meeting.

(b) The hiring of any person as a public employee.

(c) Matters which, if discussed in public, would be likely to affect adversely the reputation of any person, other than a member of the body itself.

(d) Consideration of the acquisition, sale, or lease of land which, if discussed in public, would be likely to benefit a party, or parties, whose interests are adverse to those of the general community.

91-A:4 Minutes and Records Available for Public Inspection.

Every citizen during the regular or business hours of all such bodies or agencies, and on the regular business premises of such bodies or agencies, has the right to inspect all public records, including minutes of meetings of the bodies or agencies, and to make memoranda abstracts, photographic or photostatic copies, of the records or minutes so inspected, except as otherwise prohibited by statute or section 5 of this chapter.

91-A:5 Exemptions.

The records of the following bodies are exempted from the provisions of this chapter:

I. Grand and petit juries.

II. Parole and pardon boards.

III. Personal school records of pupils.

IV. Records pertaining to internal personnel practices, confidential, commercial, or financial information, personnel, medical, welfare, and other files whose disclosure would constitute invasion of privacy.

91-A:6 Exclusion.

This chapter shall not apply to chapter 282 of the Revised Statutes Annotated, relative to employment security.

91-A:7 Violation.

Any person aggrieved by a violation of this chapter may petition the superior court for injunctive relief. The courts shall give proceedings under this chapter priority on the court calendar.