top of page

Electronic Meetings Policy

Approved 5/17/21, reviewed 5/16/22

On April 20th, 2021, Governor Holcomb signed HEA 1437, an Act involving electronic meetings and signatures. HEA 1437 is effective immediately. This policy is written to comply with the Act as written at this time. Should this law be changed to become more restrictive than current DPL board policy, the board will follow the guidelines of the updated law.

 

Attendance

Library board members may participate in meetings electronically as long as the technology used permits simultaneous communication between board members and permits the public to simultaneously attend and observe the meeting. At least half of the library board must be present in person at each meeting.

 

Board members may not attend more than half of the library board meetings during any given year electronically unless the reason is due to:

  • military service;

  • illness or other medical condition;

  • death of a relative; or

  • an emergency involving actual or threatened injury to persons or property.

 

A board member may attend two consecutive meetings by electronic communication and then must attend at least one meeting in person before attending another meeting electronically unless the reason for attending electronically is due to:

  • military service;

  • illness or other medical condition;

  • death of a relative; or

  • an emergency involving actual or threatened injury to persons or property.

 

If the board or a member of the public experiences technology failure during the meeting, this won’t prevent the meeting from continuing and won’t invalidate board actions or votes as long as there is a quorum of members still able to participate and as long as the voting requirements of the board bylaws/policies are met.

 

Members must notify the board president at least 48 hours before the meeting, to advise that the member will be attending electronically, so that the board can ensure the appropriate notice and technology measures are put in place. (This requirement would be excused for meetings called to deal with emergencies);

 

Public attendance

Members of the public may attend meetings held electronically. Members of the public are not allowed to attend executive sessions held electronically.

 

Participation

 

Board members may vote on matters presented before the board. However, the board member must be able to be both seen and heard in order to participate in any final action (vote). All votes taken during a meeting with electronic attendees must be taken by roll call vote.

 

Electronic participation in meetings is not permitted if the board is attempting to take final action to:

  • Adopt a budget;

  • Make a reduction in personnel;

  • Initiate a referendum;

  • Establish or increase a fee;

  • Establish or increase a penalty;

  • Use eminent domain authority, or

  • Establish, raise, or renew a tax.

 

Meeting memoranda (minutes) for a meeting where a board member attends electronically must:

  • state the name of each board member

    • who was present in person;

    • who attended the meeting by electronic means; and

    • who was absent, and

  • identify the electronic communication mechanism used for the meeting.

 

Electronic Signatures

 

If a statue requires a manual signature for attesting or authenticating an obligation issued by the library  (bond, note, warrant, or other obligation), an electronic signature will have the same force and effect as a manual signature.

 

During Disaster Emergencies Declared by the Governor or Local Government Officials

 

The board may meet completely electronically until the disaster or emergency is terminated.

 

During such disaster emergencies, the board may meet using any form of electronic communication as long as the meeting meets the following criteria:

  • At least a quorum of the board are participating in the meeting either in person or electronically;

  • the public is able to simultaneously attend and observe the meeting (unless it is an executive session); and

  • votes are taken by roll call vote.

 

Meeting memoranda for an electronic meeting during a disaster emergency must:

  • state the name of each board member who attended electronically and who was absent; and

  • identify the electronic communication mechanism used for the meeting.

bottom of page