Oregon Sunshine Committee
(1)The Oregon Sunshine Committee is established, consisting of 15 members as follows:
(a)The members of the public records subcommittee established under ORS 192.499 (Public records subcommittee) shall be ex officio nonvoting members of the committee.
(b)The Governor and the Attorney General, or their designees, shall be voting members of the committee.
(c)The State Archivist, or a designee of the State Archivist, shall be a voting member of the committee.
(d)The Attorney General shall appoint to the committee as voting members:
(A)A person with information technology expertise;
(B)Three representatives of local government to represent the interests of counties, cities, school districts and special districts;
(C)A representative of broadcasters;
(D)A representative of professional journalists;
(E)A representative of newspaper publishers; and
(F)A representative from a nonprofit open government or public interest group.
(2)(a) The term of each voting committee member appointed by the Attorney General is four years, but a member so appointed serves at the pleasure of the Attorney General.
(b)Before the expiration of a term of a member appointed by the Attorney General, the Attorney General shall reappoint the member to a new term or appoint a successor.
(c)If there is a vacancy for any cause in a position that is appointed by the Attorney General, the Attorney General shall make an appointment to become immediately effective.
(3)The Oregon Sunshine Committee shall do all of the following:
(a)Establish, and adjust as necessary, a plan or schedule to review all exemptions from disclosure for public records included in the Attorney General’s catalog required by ORS 192.340 (Attorney General catalog of exemptions from disclosure) that provides for review not later than December 31, 2026, except that the following exemptions need not be considered:
(A)Exemptions required by federal law;
(B)Evidentiary privileges described in ORS 40.225 (Rule 503. Lawyer-client privilege) to 40.295 (Rule 514. Effect on existing privileges), other than the lawyer-client privilege described in ORS 40.225 (Rule 503. Lawyer-client privilege);
(C)The exemption for trade secrets as described in the public records law, ORS 192.311 (Definitions for ORS 192.311 to 192.478) to 192.478 (Exemption for Judicial Department), or the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, ORS 646.461 (Definitions for ORS 646.461 to 646.475) to 646.475 (Application and construction of ORS 646.461 to 646.475);
(D)Security records described in ORS 192.345 (Public records conditionally exempt from disclosure) (23) or 192.355 (Public records exempt from disclosure) (11), (32) or (33);
(E)Personal information of certain scientific workers described in ORS 192.345 (Public records conditionally exempt from disclosure) (30), care workers described in ORS 192.363 (Contents of certain requests for disclosure) and 192.365 (Disclosure of information pertaining to home care worker, personal support worker, operator of child care facility, exempt child care provider or operator of adult foster home) or public safety workers or county juvenile department employees described in ORS 192.345 (Public records conditionally exempt from disclosure) (31); and
(F)Public safety plans described in ORS 192.345 (Public records conditionally exempt from disclosure) (18).
(b)Include in the review required by this subsection any administrative rule for which a review was requested under ORS 183.730 (Review of rule by Oregon Sunshine Committee).
(c)Study and identify any inefficiencies and inconsistencies in the application of public records laws that impede transparency in public process and government.
(d)Make recommendations on changes in existing law, policy and practice to enhance transparency and facilitate rapid fulfillment of public records requests made to public bodies.
(e)On or before July 1 of each even-numbered year, submit a report to the public records subcommittee established under ORS 192.499 (Public records subcommittee) and include in the report the recommendations described in paragraph (d) of this subsection and recommendations to amend or repeal the exemptions from disclosure reviewed by the committee during the period since the last report submitted by the committee under this section.
(4)The Oregon Sunshine Committee may take all lawful actions and exercise any lawful powers the committee deems reasonable for facilitating its work, including but not limited to conducting public hearings and creating subcommittees. Any subcommittees created by the committee are subject to the public meetings and public records requirements that apply to the committee.
(5)A majority of the voting members of the Oregon Sunshine Committee constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business.
(6)Official action by the committee requires the approval of a majority of the voting members of the committee.
(7)The committee shall select one of its members to serve as chairperson.
(8)The committee shall meet at times and places specified by the call of the chairperson or of a majority of the voting members of the committee and shall meet at least three times per year.
(9)All meetings of the committee must be open to the public. Any public records created by the committee are subject to disclosure, and any privilege or exemption from disclosure that would otherwise be applicable may not be claimed.
(10)The committee may adopt rules necessary for the operation of the committee.
(11)The Department of Justice shall provide administrative support to the committee.
(12)Members of the committee who are not members of the Legislative Assembly are not entitled to compensation, but may be reimbursed for actual and necessary travel and other expenses incurred by them in the performance of their official duties in the manner and amounts provided for in ORS 292.495 (Compensation and expenses of members of state boards and commissions). Claims for expenses incurred in performing functions of the committee shall be paid out of funds appropriated to the Department of Justice for purposes of the committee.
(13)All agencies of state government, as defined in ORS 174.111 (“State government” defined), are directed to assist the committee in the performance of the committee’s duties and, to the extent permitted by laws relating to confidentiality, to furnish information and advice the members of the committee consider necessary to perform their duties. [2017 c.654 §6; 2019 c.61 §2]
(a)Two shall serve for terms ending December 31, 2018.
(b)Two shall serve for terms ending December 31, 2019.
(c)Three shall serve for terms ending December 31, 2020.
(2)The Attorney General shall determine with specificity which appointed members will serve which terms under subsection (1) of this section. [2017 c.654 §11]
Atty. Gen. Opinions
Attorney General's Public Meetings and Records Manual, (1973) Vol 36, p 543; public meetings and records manual, (1976) Vol 37, p 1087; prohibition on disclosing marriage records, (1998) Vol 49, p 21