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Delaware Department of Justice
Attorney General
Kathy Jennings

 Archived Posts From:  January 2008

08-IB02: RE: Freedom of Information Act Complaint Against Town of Cheswold

Complainant alleged Town violated open meeting requirements of FOI by meeting in executive session to discuss impact fees for development. Town asserted executive session was brief strategy session concerning impact fees. Agenda contained no reference to executive session. HELD: Town violated FOIA by not providing public with advance notice of executive session on agenda. Executive sessions may be called in two limited contexts: pending/potential litigation and collective bargaining, but only when an open meeting would have an adverse impact on bargaining or litigation position of public body. Town violated FOIA by going into executive session for a purpose not authorized by law.

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08-IB01 1/28/2008 Holmes v. Colonial

Complainant alleged School Board violated open meeting requirement by not allowing her to speak at public meeting concerning nephew’s expulsion by School Board. School Board admitted it invited Complainant to speak but that she was not permitted to speak about nephew’s expulsion because that was not a matter of public concern. HELD: FOIA does not require a public body to allow members of the public to speak during a public meeting. There is nothing in the text of the declaration of policy or in the open meeting provision requiring public comment or guaranteeing the public the right to participate.

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