Public Notice Online Newsletter

The weekly E-Newsletter covering public notice publishing legislation and other news.

ARIZONA - House Committee Votes Overwhelmingly to Eliminate Legal Notice Publishing Requirement for New Businesses

Only a few states still force newly formed businesses to pay to publish notices in the back of the newspaper.  That number may be reduced by one as the Arizona Daily Star reported that Arizona's House Committee on Government and Higher Education has voted 7-2 to eliminate the requirement of many new business to publish legal notices. 

Another Local Online Publication Publishes Legal Notices , the local online new site covering Edmonds, Washington, has begun, with the blessing of the City of Edmonds,  publishing legal notices on this site at the same time that the dead tree newspaper of record receives them.

INDIANA Legislature Moves Budget Public Notices On Line To Save an Estimated $428,000

Last year, without fanfare, the Indiana state legislature passed H.E.A. 1266 which changed  certain public notice requriements saving the local governments around $428,000

Acording to the bill, local governments previously had to publish their budget and property tax levy two times each in two different newspapers. Under this law, civil taxing units and school corporations instead need to publish their information to the DLGF website beginning this year for 2016 budgets. 

Proposed Bill Will Force Mass. Public Entities To Continue to Pay for Legal Notices in Print

The Massachusetts House of Representatives, according to , unanimously approved a bill that preserves the right of newspapers to charge the public to publish public information legal notices in print. The bill does have a nifty name ... The Electronic Publication of Legal Notices Act. While it provides for online publication of notices, what it really does is preserve the antiquated practice of forcing local governments, school districts and utitlities to pay for notices in print. 

MINNESOTA- County of 340,000 Awards Legal Notice Designation to Publication with Circulation of 400, Saving $50,000

Here's a story that illustrates the absurdity of the requirement to publish legal notices in print.


In what appears to be a first in the world of public notices, the council of of the town of Riverhead, NY on Long Island unanimously (5-0) designated the as it's "official online publication of record." In addition, according to publisher Denise Civiletti, the local school district has done the same.

Ohio Judge Rules That Free Newspapers Can Compete to Publish Legal Notices

A Common Pleas judge in Ohio has ruled that a free newspaper can publish legal notices in Darke County, Ohio. The Ohio statute, unlike most other states does not require explicitly that paid circulation publications are the only vehicle for public notices.  The statute was changed in 2011. The next step will be to allow online publications which have more readers and would lower costs for municipalities nationwide, the right to compete as well. Newspaper trade associations have lobbied successfully to keep notices in print.

Rhode Island Governor Chafee's Proposed Budget Assumes the End of Newspaper Legal Notice Requirement

The Providence Journal reports today that Governor Chafee's proposed budget contemplates the enactment of Article 22, "The Modernization of Legal Notices and Advertisements". Article 22 would replace the requirement to publish notices in newspapers with the option to post those notices online. Newspaper publishers across the state predictably oppose the measure to save cash-strapped municpalities, school districts, counties money. We estimate, extrapolating from information reported in other states, total spend for legal notices in print in Rhode Island is $3.4 million.

"No One is Reading the (Public) Notices" in Local Newspaper, says Galveston County Commissioner. Rebidding Required

A request for bids notice published in the Galveston County Daily News yielded so few bids that  Galveston (TX) County Commissioner Ryan Dennard blasted the whole notion of having to advertise in the newspaper, reported the Daily News . Dennard noted that the lack of bids forces them to re-bid and adds expense and time to county-wide projects.

Are Newspapers Crazy to Collaborate with Government on Bills to Reduce Legal Notices in Print? Crazy Like a Fox.

State press associations, if you read this blog, would rather block legislation to move notices online even if it saves the taxpayers' money so as to continue to reap revenue from printed public notices 

Novi, Michigan Proposes Referendum To Allow Legal Notices to Be Published Online

The Michigan Press Association Bulletin reported on October 3 that the city of Novi, Michigan intends to let their citizens vote via public referendum in November as to whether to publish public notices on their website as opposed to in newspapers.

Steamboat Springs, CO Planning Commission Proposes to Reduce Public Notices Published in Newspapers

Steamboat Springs Colorado's Planning Commission is proposing to reduce the number of types of projects that require publishing public notices in printed newspapers. Steamboat Today noted in an editorial October 2 that at present 19 types of projects require published notices in print and the proposal is for that to be limited to 6.

New Legal Notice Law in Austraila Allows for Online Publication Without Publishing In Newspapers

Today's (September 6, 2013) Queensland News and Fraser Coast Chronicle which circulate in Queensland Australia includes an article revealing a change in public notice requirements worth reading. Under changes to the State Government Act, if a council (the equivalent of a county in the U.S.) makes changes in policy/legislation with relation to councilor and mayor reimbursements, they no longer have to place a public notice in the local newspaper. According to the article, local Government Minister David Crisafulli said the changes were to save money.

Wyoming-Newspapers Acquiesce To Two Bills Which Could Move More Legal Notices Online. Have Newspapers Lost Their Influence? published an item mentioning that two bills had been proposed which would slightly reduce the frequency of legal notices. While the newspaper industry in Wyoming is not wild about such a change it seems that they understand that a small hit in revenue is better than what is coming eventually - which is notices leaving print altogether. 

NY State Assembly Allows Bills To Be Published Electronically. Legal Notices Remain in Print. Millions of Pages Wasted

The New York Times published a cute story about how it will no longer be required to print proposed legislation on paper. According to the Times story, up until now an obscure provision required that proposed laws be printed and  "upon the desks of members" for three days prior to a vote on that bill. According to the Times, the bill was first proposed in 1997 and was only passed this year. Thanks to Rep. Sandra Galef we no longer waste the 19 million sheets of paper printed every two years 

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