Video recordings may replace transcripts under Dancer bill

Video recordings may replace transcripts under Dancer bill

TRENTON, N.J. – The Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee on Thursday released a bill that would allow sewerage authorities, municipal utilities authorities and county utilities authorities to distribute live recordings of meetings in lieu of some transcript requirements.

That bill (A392) is sponsored by Assemblyman Ron Dancer.

“More municipalities and county governments are live streaming and recording their various meetings, which enables the public to view or listen to a meeting while it’s in progress or at a later time,” Dancer (R-Ocean) said. “The law should reflect the changes in technology and how governments can share information. While anyone who wants a transcript should be able to receive one, governments should also have the option to share audio and video recordings to fulfill open public records act requests.”

Current law requires all those authorities to provide transcripts of public hearings held to discuss rate adjustments. Members of the public may request a full transcript and pay a nominal fee.

Dancer’s bill would allow those authorities to provide a full video or audio recording of those public hearings at no cost to the person requesting it.

The bill now goes to the speaker for consideration.