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The Kentucky Association of Counties

Covid-19 Newsroom

Governor recommends Fiscal Courts be held via audio or video conference

Attorney General guidance on holding a public meeting by audio or video conference.

Tonight, during his nightly briefing, Governor Beshear recommended that Fiscal Courts, in accordance with social distancing guidelines, hold their meetings via video or audio conference. In addition, the Attorney General has just released new guidance on how to hold public meetings during this emergency under the recently-passed Senate Bill 150.

Access the Attorney General opinion HERE.

Public meetings

Senate Bill 150 allows counties and other public agencies, with proper notice to the public, to conduct public meetings such as fiscal court meetings by live audio only teleconference, in addition to video teleconferences that were previously allowed.

Senate Bill 150 provides that live audio only teleconferences can be used only if the public agency does not have the technological capacity or availability to provide for a live video teleconference. 

Fiscal Courts utilizing the provisions of Senate Bill 150 to hold a meeting—whether a regular, special, or emergency meeting—must meet the notice requirements contained in Senate Bill 150. 

Senate Bill 150 incorporates the notice requirements of KRS 61.823(3), (4), and (5). These notice provisions require that the notice consist of the date, time, and place of the meeting and an agenda. 

While a regular meeting does not ordinarily require an agenda, Senate Bill 150 specifically incorporates such a requirement, perhaps in recognition of the abnormal means through which the meeting is occurring and to provide the public with a better understanding of the potential topics for consideration at the meeting.

Senate Bill 150 does not, however, require a public agency to limit discussion and action at a regular meeting to items listed on the agenda (though such limitations continue to be required for a special or emergency meeting).