40 CFR 1517.5 - Procedure for closing meetings.

§ 1517.5 Procedure for closing meetings.

(a) A majority of the entire membership of the Council may vote to close to public observation a meeting or a portion or portions thereof, or to withhold information pertaining to such meeting. A separate vote of the members of the Council shall be taken with respect to each meeting of the Council, a portion or portions of which are proposed to be closed to the observation of the public or with respect to any information concerning such meetings or portion thereof. A single vote may be taken with respect to a series of meetings, a portion or portions of which are proposed to be closed to the public, or with respect to information concerning such series of meetings, so long as each meeting in such series involves the same particular matters and is scheduled to be held no more than thirty days after the initial meeting in such series. The vote of each member of the Council participating in a vote shall be recorded and no proxies shall be allowed.

(b) Whenever any person whose interest may be directly affected by a portion of a meeting requests that the Council close that portion to public observation for any of the reasons referred to in § 1517.4(a) the Council, upon request of any of the members of the Council, shall decide by recorded vote whether to close that portion of the meeting.

(c) For every meeting or portion thereof closed under this part, the General Counsel of the Council before such meeting is closed shall publicly certify that, in his or her opinion, the meeting may properly be closed to the public stating each relevant exemptive provision. The Council shall retain a copy of the General Counsel's certification, together with a statement from the presiding officer of the meeting setting forth the time and place of the meeting and listing the persons present.

(d) Within one day of any vote taken on a proposal to close a meeting, the Council shall make publicly available a record reflecting the vote of each member on the question. In addition, within one day of any vote which closes a portion or portions of a meeting to the public, the Council shall make publicly available a full written explanation of its closure action together with a list naming all persons expected to attend and identifying their affiliation, unless such disclosure would reveal the information that the meeting itself was closed to protect.

(e) Following any announcement that the Council intends to close a meeting or portion thereof, any person may make a request that the meeting or portion thereof be opened. Such request shall be made of the Chairman of the Council who shall ensure that the request is circulated to all members of the Council on the same business day on which it is received. The request shall set forth the reasons why the requestor believes the meeting should be open. The Council upon the request of any member or its General Counsel, shall vote on the request.

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