FOIA; exemptions for courts of record, courts not of records, and Office of the Executive Secretary. (SB727)

Introduced By

Sen. Richard Stuart (R-Westmoreland)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Virginia Freedom of Information Act; exemptions; courts of record; courts not of record; the Office of the Executive Secretary. Exempts the judiciary, including courts of record, courts not of record, and the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia, from the provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act. The bill directs the Supreme Court of Virginia to develop Rules of Court to govern public access to records in the custody of the judiciary. Read the Bill »


01/31/2018: passed committee


01/10/2018Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/10/18 18104644D
01/10/2018Referred to Committee on General Laws and Technology
01/18/2018Impact statement from DPB (SB727)
01/22/2018Rereferred from General Laws and Technology (9-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/22/2018Rereferred to Courts of Justice
01/31/2018Reported from Courts of Justice with amendments (10-Y 5-N) (see vote tally)
02/02/2018Constitutional reading dispensed (38-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2018Read second time
02/05/2018Reading of amendments waived
02/05/2018Committee amendments agreed to
02/05/2018Engrossed by Senate as amended SB727E
02/05/2018Printed as engrossed 18104644D-E
02/06/2018Passed by for the day
02/07/2018Stricken from Senate calendar (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)


ACLU-VA Open Government writes:

The ACLU of Virginia supports openness and transparency in government. Public meetings and government documents should be as accessible to the public as possible. The activities and records of the courts and those who administer them should not be secret from the public that they serve.

Megan Rhyne writes:

This bill would cover everything from court case information to how much the courts spend on payroll. The chief justice was recently quoted as saying that the courts employ 3,000 people and processes roughly $750 million in transactions. Concern over access to judicial deliberations is justified. But cutting out a guaranteed right of access to the administrative records of the courts is untenable.

ACLU-VA Open Government writes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly opposes this bill. All government agencies should be subject to FOIA and the courts are part of the government.


JUST A FEW DAYS AGO THE SUPREME COURT, WITH A BAD CASE OF ENTITLEMENT AND A HEAVY DOSE OF NARCISSISM, issued a statement about how they reserve "the right" [lol] to create rules for themselves and that "judges' case notes are Private"...blah blah blah... I suppose since so many of them piggy-backed on each other's careers while climbing or went to "law school" (oxymoron) TOGETHER - they've decided they can't tell the difference between "practicing law" "bending law", and crowing themselves with TITLES - which is in Direct Contempt of the Constitution they are PAID to Apply when delivering their "opines" about How a STATE CODE was or was not Applied - oh wait - they don't DO THAT EITHER - let's just say they've been coddled long enough shall we?
Black Robes, just like badges - Don't Grant EXTRA Rights. In fact, IMO, all these folks need to spend a few days in a regional jail facility to Experience the POLICE STATE they've used the citizenry as their private lotto tokens to play Casino-court with.