§ 30-19.8. Collection of information by legislative study groups; policy
It shall be the policy of the Commonwealth that each legislative study group, including the Virginia Advisory Legislative Council and its subcommittees, the Virginia Code Commission, special legislative study commissions, and standing committees of the House and Senate and their subcommittees, either through its members or staff, advise the agency head of the general nature of a study or investigation being conducted by such group whenever it determines that information within such agency is applicable to such study or investigation. Thereafter, such legislative study group may seek out all information within such agency from an individual designated by the agency head to provide pertinent information or from the most direct and primary source without further communication or contact with the agency head. Each employee within such agency shall give his full cooperation to the group and its staff in collecting the information. No member or staff member of such groups shall be entitled to access to information, without permission of the agency head, for which disclosure is prohibited by specific provisions of law.
Insofar as possible, the legislative study groups and their staffs shall perform their collection duties, and utilize the services of personnel within the agencies in doing so, in such a manner as to minimize disruption of the normal operations of the agency.
Such freedom to access of all information within all state agencies is deemed absolutely necessary for the legislature to be able to efficiently evaluate laws and policies of the Commonwealth, how they are being administered, and the need for changes in such laws and policies, and also for the Virginia General Assembly to effectively fulfill its responsibility regarding legislative oversight.
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Last modified: April 3, 2009