Georgia

6. Amicus briefs

Georgia's trial and appellate courts do generally accept amicus briefs. See generally Georgia Supreme Court Rule 23; Georgia Court of Appeals Rule 25.

State organizations that regularly oppose the issuance of subpoenas to reporters include:

Georgia Press Association

3066 Mercer University Drive

Suite 200

Atlanta, Georgia 30341

(770) 454-6776

Georgia First Amendment Foundation

150 E. Ponce de Leon Avenue

Suite 350

Decatur, Georgia 30030-2588

(404) 525-3646

ACLU of Georgia

1. Attorney General's role.

The Act provides that "the Attorney General shall have authority to bring . . . actions, either civil or criminal, in his or her discretion as may be appropriate to enforce compliance with this article." O.C.G.A. § 50-17-73(b).

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.

F. Privacy

Overview

Georgia

In enforcing the State’s commitment to open courtrooms and court records, the Supreme Court of Georgia has consistently emphasized, for example, that embarrassment and reputational harm are not sufficient interests to justify closure. See, e.g., Atlanta Journal v. Long, 258 Ga.

A. Access to voir dire

Overview

Georgia

The commitment to open voir dire is well-settled under Georgia law. See Presley v. Georgia, 130 S. Ct. 721 (2010).

2. Marriage & divorce.

Marriage and divorce records are available to the general public.  O.C.G.A. 31-10-25(f).

1. Is the privilege waivable at all?

Under settled Georgia law, the privilege belongs to the reporter. See, e.g., In re Paul, 270 Ga. 680, 686 (Ga. 1999) ("The reporter's privilege belongs to the person engaged in the gathering and dissemination of news."). The privilege can be waived by a reporter, but Georgia law is generally hostile to claims of unintentional waiver. See, e.g., Kennestone Hosp. v. Hopson, 273 Ga. 145 (2000).

A. Can the requester choose a format for receiving records?

The Act requires that at the request of the party seeking the records, an agency is, where practicable, to make records maintained by computer available by electronic means, including the Internet. O.C.G.A. § 50-18-70(g). Georgia officials have accommodated requests for specially formatted computer-based information.

K. Negotiations and collective bargaining of public employees.

The Act does not exempt meetings concerning negotiations and collective bargaining of public employees.