State Supreme Court broadens lawmakers’ ability to keep documents secret

September 16, 2016


By Travis Fain
Daily Press

The Virginia Supreme Court on Thursday firmed up a legislative privilege that allows General Assembly members, and people who work with them, to keep documents secret. The decision saves four state senators, and two former ones, from contempt of court fines that had been mounting in the case since April. It also makes clear that this privilege, which stems from a state constitution clause protecting legislators from harassment during session, can be invoked not just by a state legislator, but by staff and outside consultants, so long as they’re working on legitimate legislative business.