Public meetings

Cherokee Nation council considers changes to FOI law

Danielle Keeton-Olsen | Freedom of Information | News | May 29, 2014
May 29, 2014

The Rules Committee of the Cherokee Nation’s tribal council voted 14-3 Wednesday in favor of changes to the tribe’s Freedom of Information Act, extending the government’s records request response time and centralizing requests in a single independent ombudsman.

Cherokee Phoenix photo by Will Chavez

Protesters gather outside a meeting where a legislative committee was considering restrictive amendments to the open records laws of the Cherokee Nation.

S.C. Supreme Court rules public bodies subject to FOIA

Amy Zhang | Freedom of Information | News | July 18, 2013
July 18, 2013

The South Carolina Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the state's public records law does not violate the First Amendment speech and association rights of nonprofits that are subject to the law's disclosure requirements because of their financial ties to local governments.

City-run meeting on Philadelphia finances will be closed to public

Lilly Chapa | Freedom of Information | News | April 17, 2013
April 17, 2013

Philadelphia plans to bar reporters from attending a city-run conference this week where public officials will discuss the city’s finances and budget in an effort to attract potential investors.

The two-day Philadelphia Investor Conference, which begins Thursday, is considered a private meeting under Pennsylvania’s Open Meetings Act, said Mark McDonald, a spokesman for Michael Nutter, the city’s mayor.

N.H. high court rules communications with counsel in empty public meeting exempt from Right-to-Know Law

Emily Miller | Freedom of Information | News | May 15, 2012
May 15, 2012

The New Hampshire Supreme Court affirmed a lower court's decision to deny a firefighters' association access to redacted portions of minutes from over a dozen public local government meetings held between 2000 and 2009. The court said that because no one was in the audience at the 14 public meetings, minutes involving the government agency's attorney are confidential.

Texas court rejects accountants' open meetings act claims

You-Jin Han | Freedom of Information | Feature | February 29, 2012
February 29, 2012

A Texas appellate court ruled that a state public accounting licensing board that penalized three accountants involved in the Enron scandal properly conducted a public vote on the sanctions in accordance with the state open meetings law, even though some of the deliberations had been conducted in executive session.

Georgia high court rules city council must record votes

You-Jin Han | Freedom of Information | Feature | February 7, 2012
February 7, 2012

The Georgia Supreme Court ruled yesterday that state public bodies must record in public meeting minutes the names of those members who voted against or abstained from voting on a measure, even where the vote is not taken by a roll call.

Commission finds against mayor over closed arena meetings

Jason Wiederin | Freedom of Information | Feature | September 25, 2008
September 25, 2008

The mayor of Hartford unlawfully held closed meetings with a city arena-planning group, according to Connecticut's Freedom of Information Commission.

The commission voted unanimously on Wednesday in favor of The Hartford Courant, which filed a complaint on the issue in April. Mayor Eddie A. Perez faces a $500 fine and was encouraged to attend seminars on the state’s public information laws, according to the commission's decision.

The arena-planning group also has seven days to make detailed minutes of the meetings available to the public.

California school district scolded for open meeting law violation

Cristina Abello | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | September 11, 2008
September 11, 2008

 A California school district violated the state’s open meeting law by raising its superintendent’s salary during a closed-door meeting, but it will not face sanctions, the Orange County district attorney’s office said in a Sept. 2 report.  

Reporter removed from school meeting

Hannah Bergman | Freedom of Information | Quicklink | September 3, 2008
September 3, 2008

A sheriff's deputy on Friday asked a local reporter to leave a meeting with school board members, schools officials and teachers at a North Carolina junior high while they discussed student-teacher relations.

N.Y. touches up its open government laws

Kathleen Cullinan | Freedom of Information | Feature | August 14, 2008
August 14, 2008

It's a sunny summer for government in New York, where Gov. David Paterson has signed off on a bundle of updates to the state's open records and meetings laws.