VA FOIA; meeting by electronic communication means by certain committees, etc. of State bodies. (SB1263)

Introduced By

Sen. Richard Stuart (R-Westmoreland)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Virginia Freedom of Information Act; meeting by electronic communication means by certain committees, subcommittees, etc., of state public bodies; personal matters. Authorizes an advisory public body, defined as any state public body classified as advisory pursuant to 2.2-2100 or any committee, subcommittee, or other entity, however designated, of a state public body created to advise the state public body, to meet by electronic communication means without a quorum of the advisory public body being physically assembled at one location, provided, among other requirements, the meeting is conducted utilizing a combined audio and visual communication method.  The bill requires any advisory public body holding this kind of electronic communication meeting to make an audiovisual recording of the meeting, which recording shall be preserved by the advisory public body for a period of three years from the date of the meeting.  The bill also enhances the annual reporting requirements for any public body authorized to conduct electronic communication meetings and requires the FOIA Council to develop a form that an authorized public body must make available to the public at any such meeting for public comment.  The above described provisions of the bill by its terms will expire on July 1, 2014. Finally, the bill allows a member of any public body to participate in a meeting by electronic communication means due to personal matters under certain circumstances. Currently, such remote participation is allowed only for emergency, medical condition, or distance from the meeting location of more than 60 miles. The bill is a recommendation of the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


01/11/2013Presented and ordered printed
01/11/2013Presented and ordered printed 13103272D
01/11/2013Referred to Committee on General Laws and Technology
01/28/2013Impact statement from DPB (SB1263)
02/04/2013Reported from General Laws and Technology (12-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2013Blank Action (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2013Read second time and engrossed
02/05/2013Bills placed in block (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2013Constitutional reading dispensed (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2013Passed Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/11/2013Placed on Calendar
02/11/2013Read first time
02/11/2013Referred to Committee on General Laws
02/11/2013Assigned GL sub: #2 FOIA/Procurement
02/14/2013Reported from General Laws (22-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/18/2013Read second time
02/19/2013Read third time
02/19/2013Passed House BLOCK VOTE (100-Y 0-N)
02/19/2013VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE (100-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/22/2013Bill text as passed Senate and House (SB1263ER)
02/22/2013Impact statement from DPB (SB1263ER)
02/22/2013Signed by Speaker
02/23/2013Signed by President
03/21/2013G Approved by Governor-Chapter 694 (effective 7/1/13)
03/21/2013G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0694)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 1 clip in all, totaling 30 seconds.


ACLU-VA Open Government, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

ACLU of Virginia is monitoring this legislation. Although the Virginia ACLU supports laws that allow the use of technology to expand public access to meetings and public information, it is not clear that this legislation accomplishes those goals.