Virginia Governor backs off push for sweeping changes to FOIA bill

Facing substantial opposition from legislative leaders in both parties, Gov. Terry McAuliffe is backing off sweeping changes he recommended to a Freedom of Information Act bill designed to prevent a public record from being denied when only a portion of the record needs to be redacted.

Sponsored by Sen. Scott A. Surovell, D-Fairfax, Senate Bill 494 was proposed to clarify FOIA following a Virginia Supreme Court ruling on a case Surovell brought last year that sought details on how Virginia carries out executions.

The bill easily passed both chambers of the General Assembly, but was effectively gutted by the administration when it got to the governor’s desk. Continue…