State bills open up athletic associations

The public now has more access to high school athletic associations inGeorgia after the state passed a bill requiring those organizationsto comply with state open-records laws, and the same thing may happen inPennsylvania if the state’s House of Representatives approves abill passed by the Senate in June.

Georgia’s HB 1308, signed by Gov. Roy Barnes on April 29, includes aprovision that the Georgia High School Association must for the first timeopen its meetings and records to the public.

The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association will also be subjectto state open-records and open-meetings laws if the state’s legislatureapproves a bill mandating more accountability for the organization.

SB 1403 was approved by the Senate on June 12 with a 43-6 vote to ensuremore openness from the association, which represents and regulates 1,300Pennsylvania schools.

The association had been under investigation by a Senate Special Committeeon Interscholastic Sports, which included as the first of 19 recommendationsa requirement that the PIAA comply with the state’s Sunshine Act. The billwas before the House Education Committee in August.