Members of a governmental body subject to the Open Meetings Act (OMA) are required to participate in education training sessions pursuant to section 551.005 of the Texas Government Code. The training requirement applies to all elected or appointed officials who participate in meetings subject to the OMA. However, it does not apply to public officials who do not conduct business in meetings subject to the OMA. For example, law enforcement officials, auditors, or county clerks are not required to complete training under the OMA.
The law requires that members subject to the OMA complete training within 90 days of taking the oath of office or otherwise assuming the responsibilities of office. The training must include information regarding the:
- General background of the legal requirements for open meetings;
- Applicability of the Open Meetings Act to governmental bodies;
- Procedures and requirements regarding quorums, notice, and recordkeeping under the OMA;
- Procedures and requirements for holding an open meeting and for holding a closed meeting under the OMA; and
- Penalties and other consequences for failure to comply with the OMA.
The Office of the Attorney General’s training video includes information on each of these elements and satisfies the requirements imposed by section 551.005 of the OMA. A public official may obtain a course completion certificate by following the directions at the end of the training video. The certificate must be maintained by the member’s governmental body and made available for public inspection upon request.
After completing the training course, you may print your certificate.