Meetings Act Amendment
definition of "agency" subject to the Act now includes an
"office" of the county;
is now defined as a gathering of a quorum where official business, policy or public
matter is presented, discussed or voted upon;
created by the Board Of Commissioners are subject to all requirements of the Act.
The following are not meetings:
facilities and properties provided no other official action is discussed or taken;
statewide/regional meetings or trainings provided no official action is taken;
with state or federal legislative or executive officials at their office provided no
official action is taken;
together provided no official business, policy or public matter is formulated,
presented, discussed or voted upon;
social, civic, ceremonial or religious events provided no official business, policy
or public matter is formulated, presented, discussed or voted upon.
may be conducted by teleconference in certain emergency situations;
a quorum is present, members may attend meetings by teleconference for health
reasons or if they are absent from the jurisdiction (typically limited to 2 times per
of all regular meetings must be posted at least one week in advance and on the county
called and emergency meetings are still permitted provided notice requirements are
meeting summaries, and minutes are required for all meetings.
are required to identify the person making and seconding all motions and the name of each person
voting for and against a motion.
session minutes must be kept (but shall be confidential) and shall specify each issue discussed.
votes are to be taken in an open meeting except votes authorized in executive session (which
require a subsequent vote in an open meeting prior to being binding).
• Executive Session:
or voting to:
settlement of matters raised by legal counsel pertaining to pending or potential litigation,
settlement, claims, administrative proceedings,
or other judicial actions brought or to be brought by or against the agency or any officer or
employee or in which the agency or any officer or employee may be directly
the purchase, disposal, or lease of property;
the ordering of an appraisal related to. the acquisition or disposal of real estate;
into a contract to purchase, dispose of, or lease property subject to approval in a subsequent public vote; or
into an option to purchase, dispose of, or lease real estate subject to approval in subsequent public vote;
votes taken in executive session are not binding until a subsequent vote is taken in an open meeting where
property, the identity of the property and the terms of the acquisition, disposal, or lease are
disclosed before the vote, or
settlements, where the parties and principal settlement terms are disclosed before the vote;
or deliberating upon the appointment, employment, compensation, hiring,
disciplinary action or dismissal, or periodic evaluation or rating of a public officer or
employee or interviewing applicants for the position of the executive head of an
not apply to the receipt of evidence or when hearing argument on charges filed to determine personnel
matters, including whether to impose disciplinary action or dismissal of dismiss
a public officer or employee;
not apply when considering or discussing matters of policy regarding employment or hiring practices.
records exempt from disclosure under the Open Records Act.
Criminal penalties increased from
a maximum of $500 to a maximum of $1 000 and civil penalties are authorized.
Records Ad Amendment
expanded to include "data" and "data field".
must be retained in accordance with the state Records Retention Act, O.C.G.A. § 50-18-90 et seq.
response timeline is unchanged.
may be made orally or in writing; requests must be in writing to enforce provisions.
Records custodian or officer:
records custodian/officer may be designated and may require all written requests be sent
to designated person;
day response time would not begin until designated person receives request;
post information on web-site and notify papers of designated person.
for administrative time still permitted;
charges reduced to $.10 per page;
electronic records, may only charge for cost of media;
charge for records even if they are not picked up;
provide cost estimate if cost expected to exceed $25.00.
require prepayment if cost expected to exceed $500.00 or if costs unpaid on previous
requests (until previous charges paid).
Exemptions mostly unchanged
with a few exceptions:
rejected or deferred sealed bids or proposals and related detailed cost estimates are
exempt from disclosure until final award or project abandoned;
emails addresses, unlisted phone numbers, and cell phone numbers found in public
records are exempt;
current and former employees, the following information is exempt:
and month of birth;
or medical information;
used to access his or her account;
data or information other than compensation by a government agency;
telephone number if so designated in a public record
identity of the public employee's immediate family members or dependents;
burden for determining whether or not records may include information that would reveal
trade secrets is substantially shifted to the private entity claiming the exemption;
pertaining to rating plans, underwriting rules and similar proprietary information used
to administer self-insurance to a county are exempt;
of the Department of Economic Development pertaining to an economic development
project are exempt until the project is secured by a binding commitment or
has been terminated; and records related to state training programs for
economic development projects;
tendered to a court in a civil or criminal trial are not open to disclosure without the
approval of the court.
Criminal penalties increased
from a maximum of $100 to a maximum of $1000 and civil penalties are authorized.