- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 29, 2016

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has signed a bill that increases penalties for violations of the state’s open public meetings laws.

Inslee signed Senate Bill 6171 into law on Tuesday. The Open Public Meetings Act requires certain meetings by governing bodies, such as city councils and school boards, to be open to the public. A public official that knowingly attends a meeting that violates the open meeting rules is fined under current law. The bill, requested by state Attorney General Bob Ferguson, increases those fines from $100 to $500 for a first-time offense, and $1,000 for each subsequent violation.

In a written Tuesday, Ferguson said the bill promotes “open and honest government” in the state.

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