Submitted by the North Vernon Sun and North Vernon Plain Dealer:

Q: The county council wants us to publish the “Summary of Federal Findings from the Supplemental Compliance Report of the State Board of Accounts.” Apparently, this summary is done every year and is on the State Board of Accounts website.

The report is critical of certain officeholders of the opposite party of the county council majority, and the council wants it published “like an ordinance,” which I take to mean as a legal ad. Is this indeed a legal ad?

A: No, it’s not.

The county council is not required by law to publish this report, so it doesn’t fall under the Public Notice Advertising Law’s cap on your advertising rate.

You’re free to set or negotiate the price to publish the report just as you can with any regular advertiser.

Contact Steve Key, HSPA executive director and general counsel, with media law questions at skey@hspa.com or (317) 624-4427.

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