FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-02-14

FOIA does not define the term "custodian," but for FOIA purposes, generally the custodian is the person in charge of public records. Each public body may designate who is to act as custodian of its public records. FOIA does not apply to records that are not public records in the transaction of public business.

Hill v. Fairfax County School Board

The Supreme Court of Virginia rules that the rapid and extensive exchange of emails leading up to a meeting is not itself a meeting triggering FOIA's requirements.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-08-09

Public records posted on a public body's Web site remain subject to FOIA. It is generally expected that public bodies will not charge for sending brief electronic mail messages providing Web addresses or copied excerpts of electronic records, as the actual costs incurred usually are negligible.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-03-07

An electronic mail message header showing the time and date when the message was received by a public body may not be withheld as documentation or other information that describes the design, function, operation or access control features of any security system under subdivision 3 of § 2.2-3705.2.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-19-04

E-mail exchanges between members of an electoral board do not violate FOIA's meeting provisions, though to the extent those e-mails relate to the transaction of public business, they are public records subject to disclosure. Centralized repository for e-mail messages between public body memers is a good idea. Before engaging in e-mail discussion of substantive matters, members of a public body should remember FOIA's public policy of granting citizens the access to witness the operations of their government.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-07-04

The records exemption at subdivision A 78 of § 2.2-3705 only exempts personal information provided to a public body for purposes of receiving e-mail from a public body; it does not apply to personal information provided to an individual elected official who chooses to send out e-mails or updates to constituents.

Beck v. Shelton

FOIA does not apply to members-elect. Exchange of multiple e-mails over a several-hour period not an illegal electronic meeting. Neighborhood meeting no FOIA violation.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-01-01

Use of an e-mail network listserv by city council members is an improper electronic meeting under FOIA.

FOI Advisory Council Opinion AO-01-00

Inquiries as to the status of e-mail under the Freedom of Information Act, charges for electronic records, the working papers exemption, assessment of fees for producing a requested record, the meaning of 'reasonable specificity'

Attorney General's Opinion 1999 #012

A public body may exchange messages via e-mail without the communication being considered a meeting. No official meeting can be conducted without the body's members being physically present.


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