§91-2  Public information.  (a)  In addition to other rulemaking requirements imposed by law, each agency shall:

     (1)  Adopt as a rule a description of the methods whereby the public may obtain information or make submittals or requests.

     (2)  Adopt rules of practice, setting forth the nature and requirements of all formal and informal procedures available, and including a description of all forms and instructions used by the agency.

     (3)  Make available for public inspection all rules and written statements of policy or interpretation formulated, adopted, or used by the agency in the discharge of its functions.

     (4)  Make available for public inspection all final opinions and orders.

     (b)  No agency rule, order, or opinion shall be valid or effective against any person or party, nor may it be invoked by the agency for any purpose, until it has been published or made available for public inspection as herein required, except where a person has actual knowledge thereof.

     (c)  Nothing in this section shall affect the confidentiality of records as provided by statute. [L 1961, c 103, §2; Supp, §6C-2; HRS §91-2]


Case Notes


  "Actual knowledge" referred to in section cannot give effect to rules not adopted in conformity with §91-3 and §91-4.  55 H. 478, 522 P.2d 1255.

  Planning and permitting department's policy of refusing to publicly disclose developer's engineering reports prior to their approval constituted a "rule"; as this policy was not "published or made available for public inspection" nor did plaintiff have actual knowledge of the policy prior to its initial request for the reports, department did not comply with this chapter and was proscribed from invoking this policy; thus, department violated this chapter by refusing to publicly disclose any unaccepted engineering reports and written comments, and all of its files, including developer's file, were public records that could be examined upon request.  119 H. 90, 194 P.3d 531.

  Cited:  904 F. Supp. 1098.