The Governor recently signed legislation (PA 99-714) to further amend the Open Meetings Act regarding the time period that an individual has to file a lawsuit to enforce an alleged OMA violation. Currently, a lawsuit must be filed within 60 days of the date of the meeting being challenged or within 60 days of discovery of the violation. The new law would allow an individual to file a lawsuit within 60 days of issuance of an Attorney General opinion where that person had filed a request for review with the Attorney General (PAC office). The new provision is contained in section 3 of OMA (new language is underlined):
(5 ILCS 120/3) (from Ch. 102, par. 43)
Sec. 3. (a) Where the provisions of this Act are not complied with, or where there is probable cause to believe that the provisions of this Act will not be complied with, any person, including the State's Attorney of the county in which such noncompliance may occur, may bring a civil action in the circuit court for the judicial circuit in which the alleged noncompliance has occurred or is about to occur, or in which the affected public body has its principal office, prior to or within 60 days of the meeting alleged to be in violation of this Act or, if facts concerning the meeting are not discovered within the 60-day period, within 60 days of the discovery of a violation by the State's Attorney or, if the person timely files a request for review under Section 3.5, within 60 days of the decision by the Attorney General to resolve a request for review by a means other than the issuance of a binding opinion under subsection (e) of Section 3.5.
* * *Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf