September 3 - Tuesday
meeting due to Monday Holiday
In addition to the Regular Monthly Meetings
listed, Newport Township Commissioners hold Work Sessions on the third Tuesday
of every month at 4:00 PM that are open to the public. Special Meetings are scheduled
as needed and are advertised well in advance of their occurance.
IS ILLEGAL TO RECORD A PUBLIC MEETING SECRETLY IN
Public Meetings: Recording devices are allowed
in public meetings (i.e. meetings of a government body required to be open to
the public by law) in Pennsylvania. Governmental bodies may adopt their own rules
to maintain order in their public meetings, but those rules may not include flat
prohibitions on recording.
Pennsylvania Wiretapping Law: This law is
a "two-party consent "law. All parties must consent to
the taping or it is considered a crime. You should always get consent before recording
any conversation. Violating the Pennsylvania wiretapping law can lead to a civil
lawsuit for damages by an injured party.
Consent and its limits:
You may record, film broadcast or amplify any conversation where all the parties
consent to it.
It is always legal to tape or film a face-to-face interview
when your recorder is in plain view. The consent of all parties is presumed in
these instances. However, the use of hidden cameras is covered only by the wiretap
and eaves-dropping laws if the camera also records an audio track. Pennsylvania
requires, under most circumstances, the consent of all parties to a conversation.
If there are more than two people involved in the conversation, all must consent
to the taping. Regardless of the state, it is almost always illegal to record
a conversation to which you are not a party, do not have consent to tape, and
could not naturally overhear.
A Practical Guide to Taping
Conversations in Pennsylvania 1. Consent of all parties is required.
2. There are criminal penalties.
3. The statute allows for civil suits.
4. There is a specific hidden camera law.
5. There are additional penalties
for disclosing or publishing information.
6. Notify the governmental body
holding the meeting well ahead of time that you plan to record.
7. Make it
clear to those around you that you are recording. Don't hide your camera or
This affords people an opportunity to object and undercuts
any argument that you are acting secretly. It is illegal to record secretly even
in a public meeting.