Georgia

P. Public utility records.

Public utility records on file with the Georgia Public Service Commission are subject to the Act’s disclosure requirements.

Author

Overview

Georgia

Peter C. Canfield

Thomas M. Clyde

Lesli N. Gaither

Katy S. McConnell

Dow Lohnes PLLC

Six Concourse Parkway

Suite 1800

Atlanta, GA 30328-6117

Tel: (770) 901-8800

3. Commission or agency enforcement.

The Act does not assign enforcement or permit appeals to a specific agency or commission. Actions to enforce the provisions of the Act may be brought in superior court by "any person, firm, corporation, or other entity," or by the Attorney General. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-73(a).

IV. Who is covered

By its express statutory language, the scope of Georgia's privilege is very broad. It applies to "[a]ny person, company, or other entity engaged in the gathering or dissemination of news for the public through a newspaper, book, magazine, or radio or television broadcast." O.C.G.A. § 24-9-30.

1. Interviews for public employment.

Although the Act generally exempts meetings when discussing the appointment or hiring of a public employee, it does provide that agency meetings "to discuss or take action on the filling of a vacancy in the membership of the agency itself" shall be open to the public. O.C.G.A. § 50-14-3(6).

FOREWORD

Over the past decade, as I see it, our court has breathed life into some old words that have lain dormant within our Constitution for most of their century-old existence. The words are:

Public officers are the trustees and servants of the people and are at all times amenable to them.

2. Nature of business subject to the law.

(This section is blank. See the subpoints below.)

4. Infectious disease and health epidemics.

Infectious disease and health epidemic case reports are not open to public inspection.  O.C.G.A. 31-12-2(a).

D. Post-trial proceedings

Overview

Georgia

In Georgia, all stages of criminal trials are presumed to be public, including post-trial proceedings. In R.W. Page Corp. v. Lumpkin, 249 Ga. 576, 578-79 (1982), the Supreme Court of Georgia held that: “Although the sixth amendment to our federal constitution (Code Ann. § 1-806) affords the accused a right to a public trial, our state constitution point-blankly states that criminal trials shall be public. Const. of Ga. 1976, art. I, § 1, (Code Ann. § 2-111).

C. Does the existence of information in electronic format affect its openness?

Georgia's Act requires the disclosure of documents without regard to the format in which they are stored. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-70(a).