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Delaware Department of Justice
Attorney General
Kathy Jennings




 Archived Posts From:  February 2007

07-IB03: Re: Freedom of Information Act Complaint Against Town of Cheswold

The Complainant alleged the Town Council of Cheswold (the “Council”) violated the “open meetings” provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) by: (a) meeting on without adequate notice to the public in the agenda to discuss changing the basis for property tax assessments; and (b) meeting without adequate notice to the public in the agenda to rescind an earlier resolution to forgive real estate taxes to elderly citizens if those citizens were exempt from Kent County taxes. Held: (a) the Council violated the open meeting requirements of FOIA by failing to alert the public that it would discuss changing the basis for property tax assessments; and (b) the Council did not rescind an earlier resolution at the meeting in question — it merely amended the minutes of an earlier meeting to accurately reflect that the Council did not resolve to reinstate a property tax exemption for the elderly.

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07-IB02 RE: Application Of The Freedom Of Information Act To The Courts

The Complainant, Senator Karen E. Peterson, asked whether the public record requirements of the Delaware Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), apply to the courts of the State of Delaware. Held: the General Assembly intended to exclude the judiciary from the application of FOIA. The language of FOIA demonstrates a legislative intent to respect the independence of the judiciary as a separate, co-equal branch of government and the judiciary’s right to control access to its records and proceedings by court rule.

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