2016 Georgia Code
Title 50 - State Government
Chapter 14 - Open and Public Meetings
§ 50-14-3. Excluded proceedings
(a) This chapter shall not apply to the following:
(1) Staff meetings held for investigative purposes under duties or responsibilities imposed by law;
(2) The deliberations and voting of the State Board of Pardons and Paroles; and in addition such board may close a meeting held for the purpose of receiving information or evidence for or against clemency or in revocation proceedings if it determines that the receipt of such information or evidence in open meeting would present a substantial risk of harm or injury to a witness;
(3) Meetings of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation or any other law enforcement or prosecutorial agency in the state, including grand jury meetings;
(4) Adoptions and proceedings related thereto;
(5) Gatherings involving an agency and one or more neutral third parties in mediation of a dispute between the agency and any other party. In such a gathering, the neutral party may caucus jointly or independently with the parties to the mediation to facilitate a resolution to the conflict, and any such caucus shall not be subject to the requirements of this chapter. Any decision or resolution agreed to by an agency at any such caucus shall not become effective until ratified in a public meeting and the terms of any such decision or resolution are disclosed to the public. Any final settlement agreement, memorandum of agreement, memorandum of understanding, or other similar document, however denominated, in which an agency has formally resolved a claim or dispute shall be subject to the provisions of Article 4 of Chapter 18 of this title;
(A) Of any medical staff committee of a public hospital;
(B) Of the governing authority of a public hospital or any committee thereof when performing a peer review or medical review function as set forth in Code Section 31-7-15, Articles 6 and 6A of Chapter 7 of Title 31, or under any other applicable federal or state statute or regulation; and
(C) Of the governing authority of a public hospital or any committee thereof in which the granting, restriction, or revocation of staff privileges or the granting of abortions under state or federal law is discussed, considered, or voted upon;
(7) Incidental conversation unrelated to the business of the agency; or
(8) E-mail communications among members of an agency; provided, however, that such communications shall be subject to disclosure pursuant to Article 4 of Chapter 18 of this title.
(b) Subject to compliance with the other provisions of this chapter, executive sessions shall be permitted for:
(1) Meetings when any agency is discussing or voting to:
(A) Authorize the settlement of any matter which may be properly discussed in executive session in accordance with paragraph (1) of Code Section 50-14-2;
(B) Authorize negotiations to purchase, dispose of, or lease property;
(C) Authorize the ordering of an appraisal related to the acquisition or disposal of real estate;
(D) Enter into a contract to purchase, dispose of, or lease property subject to approval in a subsequent public vote; or
(E) Enter into an option to purchase, dispose of, or lease real estate subject to approval in subsequent public vote.
No vote in executive session to acquire, dispose of, or lease real estate, or to settle litigation, claims, or administrative proceedings, shall be binding on an agency until a subsequent vote is taken in an open meeting where the identity of the property and the terms of the acquisition, disposal, or lease are disclosed before the vote or where the parties and principal settlement terms are disclosed before the vote;
(2) Meetings when discussing 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 agency. This exception shall not apply to the receipt of evidence or when hearing argument on personnel matters, including whether to impose disciplinary action or dismiss a public officer or employee or when considering or discussing matters of policy regarding the employment or hiring practices of the agency. The vote on any matter covered by this paragraph shall be taken in public and minutes of the meeting as provided in this chapter shall be made available. Meetings by an agency to discuss or take action on the filling of a vacancy in the membership of the agency itself shall at all times be open to the public as provided in this chapter;
(3) Meetings of the board of trustees or the investment committee of any public retirement system created by or subject to Title 47 when such board or committee is discussing matters pertaining to investment securities trading or investment portfolio positions and composition; and
(4) Portions of meetings during which that portion of a record made exempt from public inspection or disclosure pursuant to Article 4 of Chapter 18 of this title is to be considered by an agency and there are no reasonable means by which the agency can consider the record without disclosing the exempt portions if the meeting were not closed.
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