The Virginia FOIA Opinion Archive

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Attorney General's Opinion 1977-78 #054

School board hearing on budget must be open, though FOIA doesn't mandate a formal public hearing on the budget.

Attorney General's Opinion 1977-78 #482

Honor committee, funded and maintained by a state university board of visitors is public body subject to FOIA. Honor council trials are not open meetings becayse they involve student discipline.

Attorney General's Opinion 1977-78 #485

Prearranged out-of-town meeting of two public bodies required that notice be sent to those requesting it and that minutes be taken.

Attorney General's Opinion 1977-78 #484

City council and taxpayers' association may meet together as long as FOIA's notice and minutes procedures are followed.

Attorney General's Opinion 1977-78 #492

Secret ballot voting in open meeting prohibited. Actions taken by secret-ballot vote are ineffective until affirmed by open vote in open meeting.

Attorney General's Opinion 1976-77 #308A

Chance encounter of two or members of a local governing body is not a meeting subject to FOIA, even if the members discuss public business when they see each other, so long as the encounter was not prearranged with the purpose of discussing public business.

Attorney General's Opinion 1976-77 #308

Three-member committee of nine-member council is subject to FOIA. Public and press may be excluded from a properly called executive session, but there is nothing to prohibit the attendance at the meeting of people who would be helpful or necessary to the meeting.

Attorney General's Opinion 1976-77 #316

No executive session under legal matters exemption to discuss advertising contract bid and negotiations. No executive session under real estate exemption to discuss debt owed on property already acquired.

WTAR v. City Council of the City of Virginia Beach

An injunction is not justified where there is not a reasonable probability that violations of FOIA will occur again.

Attorney General's Opinion 1975-76 #406

University of Virginia advisory committee made up of faculty and administrative personnel not subject to FOIA.

Attorney General's Opinion 1975-76 #412

Three-member board of supervisors subject to FOIA. Three-member committee may hold closed meeting to discuss acquisition of building to house county offices.

Attorney General's Opinion 1975-76 #417

FOIA violation for going into executive session without a motion, and for reconvening, having transacted public business, without a motion. Election held in improper executive session may be set aside by court action. Acts of entity with an improperly elected official as a member are valid until the official is notified of the legal defect behind his/her election.

Attorney General's Opinion 1975-76 #411

Late-night gathering of six council members with county manager, commonwealth attorney and select others to discuss police scandal was a meeting for purposes of FOIA.

Attorney General's Opinion 1975-76 #410

Mere distribution of a letter during executive session without discussion does not violate FOIA, though the letter itself is an official record subject to disclosure upon request.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #568

General budget discussions must be public. Public vote required before adjourning to closed meeting.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #582

Body cannot discuss general budget and general public employee salary levels in closed session.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #574

Meetings between city manager and city council are public unless an exemption applies. Conflicting city charter provisions trump FOIA.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #078

Meetings between school board employees and an education association need not be open.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #570

Discussion in closed session about town manager's employment in violation of FOIA because the meeting was not preceded by an affirmative vote in open session.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #573

Industrial authority may hold closed meeting to discuss prospective business relocations provided there has been no prior public announcement about the business' intention to locate in the area. Duty is to create access to records/meetings, not to proactively release information.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #022

Board employees may meet with employee representatives in closed session, though meeting with the representatives and the actual board must be open.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #212

Industrial development authorities are subject to FOIA. Act doesn't require public notice of meetings, just notice to those who have requested it.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #579

Informal gathering of body's members to discuss and vote on the election of mayor and vice-mayor violates FOIA.

Attorney General's Opinion 1974-75 #578

Secret-ballot vote at open meeting not permissible. Election of officers by improper secret at an open meeting not valid until vote can be retaken in open session.

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