Attorney General Dave Yost kicked off Sunshine Week Monday by releasing the 2019 edition of the Sunshine Laws Manual, a one-stop resource for information on the Ohio Public Records and Open Meetings Acts.
The Sunshine Laws Manual , also known as the “Yellow Book,” reflects the past year’s law changes and legal decisions affecting Ohio’s open government laws. The Attorney General’s Public Records Unit updates the manual annually to help citizens understand their rights and to help public servants understand their obligations under the laws.
“Most days, what happens at city hall or the county courthouse has much more impact on your life than the latest installment of outrage from Washington, D.C.,” Yost said. “Our ability as a people to stay informed and hold local politicians accountable hinges on the freedom to access government information through public records and open meetings.”
In addition to the manual, the Public Records Unit partners with the Ohio Auditor of State’s Office throughout the year to offer free Sunshine Laws trainings at dozens of locations across the state. Public officials or their designees are required to complete training on Ohio’s Public Records Act at least once per elected term. A full-length version of the training is available online as well.
The Unit also created a model public records policy for local governments to use as a guide when creating their own policies. These resources and more are available on the Attorney General’s website at http://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Sunshine.
Sunshine Week is a national initiative promoting government transparency and access to freedom of information resources. It is recognized annually in mid-March.