Times News Publishing Co. v. Alamance-Burlington Board of Education (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-075-17, 9 pp.) (Chris Dillon, J.) Appealed from Alamance County Superior Court (Michael O’Foghludha, J.) N.C. App.
Holding: During its closed session, the defendant-school board kept minutes that are sufficient to give someone not in attendance a reasonable understanding of what transpired; thus, the school board met its obligation to create a “general account” under G.S. § 143-318.10 of the Open Meetings Law.
We affirm the trial court’s decision to require the school board to unredact only one paragraph of its closed-session minutes.
Section 143-318.10 is unambiguous in allowing a public body to prohibit public inspection of any portion of minutes or a “general account” of a closed session where disclosure would frustrate the purpose of the closed session.
The trial court reviewed the unredacted minutes submitted under seal and concluded that all but one paragraph were properly withheld as containing personnel information and discussions protected by attorney-client privilege. We have carefully reviewed the unredacted minutes, and we conclude that the undisclosed portions were properly redacted by the trial court. We also agree with the trial court that the first paragraph on the last page of the minutes concerns a policy issue which must be disclosed to the public.