Pennsylvania's Sunshine Act requires that agencies provide advance notice of certain meetings that must be open to the public.
When an organization is created under law and exercises certain kinds of governmental authority through the joint action of its members, the public has a legal right to witness the organization deliberating and voting to exercise its authority.
Contact your agency's legal office with questions about whether a meeting is subject to the Sunshine Act.
meetings in harrisburg area
OA coordinates the publication of notices in the Patriot-News for state agency meetings in the Harrisburg area. Meetings are advertised in the "Patriot-News, Harrisburg."
- Confirm publication days: Public meetings must be published at least 72 hours in advance of the actual meeting date for regular meetings and published at least 24 hours in advance for special, rescheduled and cancelled meetings. This means OA must receive your meeting information by 9 a.m. on Tuesday for publication on Thursday of the same week; by 9 a.m. on Thursday for publication on Sunday; and by 9 a.m. on Friday for publication on Tuesday.
- Submit meeting information to OA: If you have a pa.gov email address, you must use the online form to submit your meeting information to OA.
If you do not have a pa.gov email address: You must download and submit Form STD-005, The Sunshine Act Meeting Notices by email or fax to 717-346-6771.
- Confirm publication: Use this site to confirm that your meeting notice was published in the Patriot News, Harrisburg.
Please note that OA may reformat meeting information to limit the cost of the advertisement; however the meeting name, date and time will not be changed.
meetings outside harrisburg area
The agency hosting the meeting is responsible for making sure the meeting is publicly advertised and paying the cost of the advertisement.
- Assemble meeting and invoice information: Complete Form STD-521, Publications Authorization and Invoice. Be sure to include, in capital letters, THE SUNSHINE ACT MEETING NOTICES in the space immediately above the TO and FROM blocks.
- Submit meeting information to newspaper: Submit the form to the local newspaper of general circulation in the area of the meeting.
- Pay the newspaper: Forward the invoice and meeting notice to your agency's payment office.
- Confirm publication: Confirm with the newspaper that the meeting notice was published and report any errors or omissions to it immediately.