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§6-9A-3. Proceedings to be open; public notice of meetings.

(a) Except as expressly and specifically otherwise provided by law, whether heretofore or hereinafter enacted, and except as provided in section four of this article, all meetings of any governing body shall be open to the public.

(b) Any governing body may make and enforce reasonable rules for attendance and presentation at any meeting where there is not room enough for all members of the public who wish to attend.

(c) This article does not prohibit the removal from a meeting of any member of the public who is disrupting the meeting to the extent that orderly conduct of the meeting is compromised: Provided, That persons who desire to address the governing body may not be required to register to address the body more than fifteen minutes prior to time the scheduled meeting is to commence.

(d) Each governing body shall promulgate rules by which the date, time, place and agenda of all regularly scheduled meetings and the date, time, place and purpose of all special meetings are made available, in advance, to the public and news media.

(e) Each governing body of the executive branch of the state shall electronically file a notice of each meeting with the Secretary of State for publication on the Secretary of State's website.

(1) Each notice shall state the date, time, place and purpose of the meeting.

(2) Each notice of a special meeting or a regular meeting shall be filed in a manner to allow each notice to appear on the Secretary of State's website at least five business days prior to the date of the meeting.

(3) When calculating the days, the day of the meeting is not to be counted. If a meeting notice is filed anytime other than during the Secretary of State's regular business hours, the date of filing will be considered the next business day.

(f) The Secretary of State shall retain copies of all notices filed for ten years.

(g) The Secretary of State may promulgate procedural rules governing the electronic filing of meeting notices.

(h) In the event of an emergency a governing body may call an emergency meeting.

(1) The governing body of a state executive branch agency shall electronically file a notice for an emergency meeting with the Secretary of State, as soon as practicable prior to the meeting. Any other governing body shall notice an emergency meeting in a manner which is consistent with this article and the Ethics Commission Committee on Open Governmental Meeting's opinions issued pursuant to the authority of section ten of this article, as soon as practicable prior to the meeting.

(2) The emergency meeting notice shall state the date, time, place and purpose of the meeting and the facts and circumstances of the emergency.

(i) Upon petition by any adversely affected party any court of competent jurisdiction may invalidate any action taken at any meeting for which notice did not comply with the requirements of this section.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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