New Local Government Officials' Guide to Freedom of Information Act, Published by U.Va.'s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service, Now Available

Feb. 13, 2007 -- The 2007 edition of the Guide to the Virginia Freedom of Information Act brochure is now available from the University of Virginia’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service. It provides the knowledge to ensure that public business is carried out with public access, to the fullest extent permissible under the law.

This 36-page, soft cover guide explains the Virginia Freedom of Information Act in a clear readable format of over 100 questions and answers. Information is arranged under six broad categories:

Who is covered by the act?

What is considered a public meeting?

When are closed meetings permissible?

To what public records does the act apply?

And what happens if someone violates the act?

The guide also includes numerous other sources of FOIA information.

It is indispensable for Virginia’s elected and appointed government officials as well as Virginia citizens who care about good government. First issued in 1996 with subsequent editions in 1999 and 2003, the guide has had over 25,000 copies distributed.

The author of the guide, Roger C. Wiley, graduated from the University of Virginia’s Class of 1967 and from its Law School in 1970. He is a partner in the Richmond law firm of Hefty and Wiley, which represents local government bodies throughout Virginia. He has been advising Virginia local governments on legal matters for over 35 years and has served as a state Senate appointee on the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council since its inception in 2000.

The guides cost $5 each; $4 for an order of 25 or more, and both prices include shipping and handling. For more information, or to order the guide, call 434-982-5704, e-mail: or see the center’s Web site at and click on publications. There is a link in the upper right-hand corner for a copy of the flyer.