Motions to Close Meeting, and Motions When Coming Out of Closed Meeting

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-04-08

A public body may convene a closed meeting to discuss the formation and award of a procurement contract.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-13-07

FOIA allows public bodies to hold closed meetings to discuss the acquisition of real property if holding the discussion in an open meeting would adversely affect the bargaining position or negotiating strategy of the public body. Absent such jeopardy to the public body's bargaining position or negotiating strategy, these discussions must be open.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-06-07

Meetings must be noticed for the time when they actually begin. A public body must approve by vote in an open meeting a motion to convene a closed meeting, and must certify the closed meeting after reconvening in open session. The motion and certification must be included in the meeting minutes, along with records of the votes taken to approve the motion and certification.

White Dog Publishing v. Culpeper Board of Supervisors

In considering certain newspaper publishers' application for a writ of mandamus, the circuit court erred in finding that a county board of supervisors did not violate the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by going into a closed session at a particular meeting and erred in failing to award reasonable costs and attorney's fees under the Act. Because the purpose of the closed session was not the formation or modifications of a procurement contract, it did not fall within the statutory public contract exemption of § 2.2-3711(A)(30), and special circumstances did not make an award of fees and costs unjust.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-01-05

School board's motion to go into closed session complied with FOIA's three-part test for such motions. County's vague reference to affirm a recommendation on a personnel matter identified by number rather than by name or position did not comport with FOIA's requirement that votes taken after reconvening after a closed meeting must describe the substance of the action.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-24-04

A motion to go into closed meetings to discuss 'issues relating to a specifically named individual' is too vague to identify either the subject matter under discussion or the purpose of the discussion. Though a meeting might have been closed without the proper procedure, votes taken after the meeting, provided they were recorded in public, are valid.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-08-02

City manager may poll council members for advvice on how to spend money in the manager's discretionary fund. Motions to go into closed session must state the general exemption, the purpose and the subject matter of the meeting. No public discussion or vote is needed where a further action is not predicated on council action.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-45-01

A motion to go into closed session that meets the procedural requirements of FOIA must still concern a topic that is actually a proper subject for a closed meeting. Discussion of financial incentives a locality is considering offering to lure a new business to the area is a proper subject for a closed meeting.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-38-01

It is not a violation of FOIA for public body members to reach a consensus in closed session, but nothing is official until a vote in open session has been taken; a motion to close a meeting listing only the purpose and the statutory citation is inadequate because it does not also identify the purpose of the meeting; FOIA insures the public's right to witness public meetings, it does not guarantee the right to participate in meetings.

Mannix v. Board of Supervisors

[The case was first heard in General District Court; order below.]

May 3, 2001

Mr. Patrick J. Mannix, Sr.
Bristol, VA 24201

Mr. J.D. Bowie
Attorney at Law
Bristol, VA 24203

Re: Patrick J. Mannix, Sr. v. Washington County Board of Supervisors
Circuit Court of Washington County
File No. 01-93



Subscribe to RSS - Motions to Close Meeting, and Motions When Coming Out of Closed Meeting