WSR 99-01-107

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINION

Cite as: AGO 1998 No. 15[November 30, 1998]



public meetings - open public meetings act - counties - recording official proceedings - Authority of county to restrict video and/or sound recording of county meetings



1 A county does not have authority to ban video or sound recording of a meeting required to be open to the public by the Open Public Meetings Act (RCW 42 30), the county could regulate recording only to the extent necessary to preserve order at the meeting and facilitate public attendance



2 A county has authority to ban video or sound recording of any lawful executive session of a public meeting



3 If a meeting is not an "open public meeting" as defined in RCW 42 30, but is required to be an open meeting by some other statute, the extent of the county's authority to restrict recording of such a meeting would depend on the language and the intent of the controlling statute



4 If a county officer conducts a "private meeting" as may be defined in law, the county has authority to restrict or prohibit the recording of such meetings

The Honorable Randall K Gaylord

San Juan County Prosecuting Attorney

350 Court Street

P O Box 760

Friday Harbor, WA 98250



Reviser's note: The typographical errors in the above material occurred in the copy filed by the Attorney General's Office and appear in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.

Legislature Code Reviser 

Register

Washington State Code Reviser's Office