City of Fort Smith v. Wade (Majority, with Concurring and Dissenting)Annotate this Case
The Supreme Court reversed the order of the circuit court granting Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment and finding that the City of Fort Smith and its directors violated the open-meeting provisions of the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) when three of the city directors and the city administrator exchanged emails relating to city business, holding that the email communication did not violate the open-meeting provisions set forth in Ark. Code Ann. 25-19-106.
Specifically, the Court held (1) FOIA's open-meeting provisions apply to email and other forms of electronic communication between governmental officials just as they apply to in-person or telephonic conversations; but (2) the emails in this case were only background information and non-decisional information sharing, and therefore, there was no violation of the of the open-meeting provisions.