1. Civil

The privilege applies in civil proceedings. See, e.g., O.C.G.A. § 24-9-30 (privilege applies "in any proceeding where the one asserting the privilege is not a party"); In re Paul, 270 Ga. 680, 684 (Ga. 1999).

3. Contact of interested amici.

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press files amicus briefs in important cases before the state's highest courts, as does the Georgia First Amendment Foundation, the Georgia Press Association, and various media entities in the state.

(6). Penalties and remedies for failure to give adequate notice.

Anyone who "knowingly and willfully" conducts or participates in a meeting without complying with every part of the Act is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a $500 fine. O.C.G.A. § 50-14-6. Failure to give adequate notice can result in the invalidation of the proceedings, the issuance of legal injunctions, and the requirement to pay the objecting party's legal costs. See Slaughter v. Brown, 269 Ga. App.

6. Time limit for filing suit.

The statute does not set forth a specific limitations period for filing suit to enforce compliance. However, a court will not grant equitable relief to one whose long delay renders the ascertainment of truth difficult. O.C.G.A. § 23-1-25. Courts of equity may interpose an equitable bar, whenever from the lapse of time and laches of the complainant, it would be inequitable to allow a party to enforce his legal rights. O.C.G.A. §  9-3-3. SeeRentz v. City of Moultrie, 231 Ga.

2. Disciplinary records.

Disciplinary records are subject to the Act’s disclosure requirements.

e. News organization / medium

By its express statutory language, the privilege 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.


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. Description of each exemption.

a. Investigative meetings.

Staff meetings held for investigative purposes under duties or responsibilities imposed by law may be closed under the Act. O.C.G.A. § 50-14-3(1).

b. Board of Pardons and Paroles.

B. What governments are subject to the law?

The Act applies to all state and local "agencies," which is defined to include (a) every state department, agency, board, bureau, commission, public corporation, and authority; (b) every county, municipal corporation, school district, or other political subdivision of the state; (c) every department, agency, board, bureau, commission, authority, or similar body of each such county, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision of the state; (d) every city, county, regional or other authority established pursuant to law; and (e), with certain exceptions specified in the Act