Civil Division-New Castle County
January 24, 1995
Del. Op. Atty. Gen. 95-IB02 (Del.A.G.), 1995 WL 794531
(concluding that proceedings before Court on the Judiciary are not subject to the “open meeting” provisions of FOIA, and that any records pertaining to such proceedings are not ”public records” subject to public inspection)
Mr. Bruce L. Hoster
P.O. Box 134
Bethel, DE 19931
RE: Freedom of Information Act Complaint 29 Del. C.§ 10005(e) Court on the Judiciary
Dear Mr. Hoster:
Please consider this the Attorney General’s written determination to 29 Del. C. § 10005(e) in the above-referenced matter.
As you are aware, after the Attorney General’s Office received your complaint on December 17, 1994, it was required to conduct an investigation to determine the validity of the complaint. 29 Del. C. § 10005(e). Your complaint was forwarded to the Court on the Judiciary and Kathy L. Howard responded attaching a copy of the Court’s November 16, 1994 Order. The Court attached this Order to its response to your original request for information in November, 1994, but it was not included by you with the information submitted with your complaint.
Your complaint refers to a proceeding before the Court on the Judiciary and your attempt to review the record and non-sworn testimony pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act (the “Act”). You requested an opinion on the legality of the Court’s denying you access to these materials.
A review of the Court’s November 16, 1994 Order reveals that the information requested by you is not within the scope of the Act. As the Court notes in paragraph (4):
The functions of the Court on the Judiciary and its arms necessarily involve the deliberations of a court. Therefore, the provisions of 29
. Ch. 100 (the “Freedom of Information Act”) are not be their terms, applicable to the matters referred to herein, and the Freedom of Information Act may not constitutionally be construed to be applicable thereto;
The Court finds that the exception to the Act provided by Section 10004(h)(4) applies to the Court on the Judiciary. The deliberations of the Court are not public meetings, and therefore, the records of these meetings are not public records. The Act does not support your request for information.
Very truly yours,
James J. Hanley
Deputy Attorney General
John K. Welch
Deputy Attorney General
Michael F. Foster
Acting State Solicitor