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Judicial Watch • Fairfax Co School Board v JW transgender 14395

Fairfax Co School Board v JW transgender 14395

Fairfax Co School Board v JW transgender 14395

Page 1: Fairfax Co School Board v JW transgender 14395

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Number of Pages:35

Date Created:October 30, 2015

Date Uploaded to the Library:November 02, 2015

Tags:Reaves, 14395, Fairfax, transgender, bailey, Freedom, policy, Virginia, request, COUNTY, records, board, FOIA, school


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VIRGIN
r~.1 THE FAIRFAX CIRCUIT COURT
Fairfax County School Board
PETITIONER
CASE#
VERSUS
Judicial Watch, Inc.
RESPONDENT
NOTICE
Please take notice that the _2_nd day November
8:30 a.m. the PETITIONER/RESPONDENT will appear before the Calendar Control Judge for
the following schedule hearing Petition for Additional Time
Respond FOIA Requests.
4020 University Drive, Suite 300
Address
Fairfax, 22030 703 691-1235
Daytime Telephone#
CERTIFICATE SERVICE certify that
hav~~d delivered copy this Notice this 30th day October 201s
~-----........
CCR-F-20
Revised 3/2007 Wiboo, foe Mci toh,
VIRGINIA: THE CIRCUIT COURT OFFAIRF COUNTY
FAIRFAX COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS,
Petitioner
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC.,
2015
Civil Act. No.:
~~~~~~~-----R=e=s~p~o=n=de=n=t~ ~~~)
Serve: James Wilson, Esq., Reg. Agent
2002 Kenmore St.
Arlington, 22207-3711
PETITION FOR ADDITIONAL TIME RESPOND FOIA REQUESTS
Petitioner, the Fairfax County School Board (FCPS the School Board), counsel
and pursuant Va. Code 2.2-3704 (C), respectfully petitions this Honorable Court for
additional time respond certain requests for email records submitted Respondent,
Judicial Watch, Inc. (Judicial Watch), pursuant the Virginia Freedom oflnformation Act.
support thereof, FCPS states follows: Respondent, Judicial Watch, Inc, 501(c) (3) nonprofit corporation registered
business Virginia, and conservative non-partisan educational foundation, whose
principal place business 425 Third Street, SW, Washington, DC. This Court has
personal jurisdiction over Judicial Watch pursuant Va. Code 8.-01-328.1 (A)(l), Judicial
Watch having submitted requests FCPS under Virginias Freedom Information Act
(FOIA) member the media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia and behalf five Virginia citizens. Virginias Freedom oflnformation Act provides, pertinent part, that:
Any public body may petition the appropriate court for additional time
respond request for records when the request for extraordinary
volume ofrecords requires extraordinarily lengthy search, and
response the public body within the time required this chapter will
prevent the public body from meeting its operational responsibilities. Before
proceeding with the petition, however, the public body shall make
reasonable efforts reach agreement with the requester concerning the
production the records requested April and May of2015, Judicial Watch submitted FCPS seven FOIA requests seeking,
inter alia, all email and text communications from October 2014 through May 2015
between all School Board members and the Division Superintendent, Karen Garza,
numerous other FCPS administrators and staff, Federal Congressional members and
staff, the Va. Atty. General and his staff, members the Virginia General Assembly and
their staff, and several other entities, which emails pertain School Board Policy 1450
(Nondiscrimination), transgender, gender equality and/or same sex marriage. Exh. A-FOIA
Requests dated April 27, 29, and May 2015. May 4th, May 6th, and May 12th, the School Boards FOIA officer, Brandynn Reaves,
responded Judicial Watchs FOIA requests, confirming that the collective requests sought
emails between all twelve Board members and all FCPS personnel (over 25,000 employees),
and advising that the estimated cost accessing, duplicating, supplying, and searching for
the combined requested emails was $562.32. FCPS requested advance payment provided Va. Code 2.2-3704 (H) (which request tolled the time period under which the School
Board was required respond the FOIA requests). See, Exh. B-Reaves FOIA Responses May May and May 12, 2015. was not until five months later, August 21, 2015, that Judicial Watch responded
Reaves, confirm that Judicial Watch does intend pay all fees associated with
processing the FOIA requests filed with your office April 23, April 29, and May
2015. will send check for $562.32 soon possible. See, Exh. Judicial Watch
8/21/2015 email. Pursuant FOIA, FCPS was under obligation produce the requested documents until
such time the requester paid the costs associated with these very broad and burdensome
requests. Va. Code 2.2-3704(F)(H). Judicial Watch did not pay the requested costs until Thursday, October 2015. Reaves immediately requested that the FCPS employee responsible for conducting such
email searches locate all emails which were responsive the seven requests, searched
appropriate terms. That search, which included over 25, 000 FCPS employee email
accounts, was returned 4:30 Friday, October 2015 and identified approximately
2264 emails. All those emails were then transmitted different department for
conversion workable format under which Reaves and her only assistant (part-time) could
review (and redact needed) each email make initial determination whether the email
fell within one more FOIA exemptions, particularly Va. Code 2.2-3705.1 (written advice
oflegal counsel ... and any other records protected the attorney-client privilege)
2.2-3705.7 (2) (working papers the Division Superintendent). The process ofreviewing thousands ofFCPS emails extremely time-consuming. Reaves her assistant must open each email, read it, determine the email any portion thereof
may exempt, and so, redact the email, convert all responsive emails PDF, then sort all
the emails into groups responsive the various categories contained within the seven FOIA
requests.
10. Further review the emails then provided trained paralegal the FCPS Office
Division Counsel, who able consult with counsel confirm whether particular emails
are properly exempted and produced.
11. Reaves and her assistant promptly began their review the emails the next working
day, Tuesday, October 13th (Monday was Presidents Day). Due the huge volume
emails responsive the seven FOIA requests, became apparent Reaves that additional
time was needed review, redact, sort and produce the requested emails. October 16th,
Reaves invoked the additional seven-working day extension provided FOIA, where
not practically possible provide the requested records determine they are available
within the five-day work period. Va. Code 2.2-3704 (4). Exh. 10/16/2015 Reaves
letter.
12. October 27, 2015, FCPS provided Judicial Watch with containing approximately
1933 pages non-exempt emails. Exh. October 27, 2015 FOIA response.
13. During her review those emails, Reeves had noticed that some emails did not seem
complete threads. Accordingly, she asked second search ensure that the FOIA
response was comprehensive. The second search, which was not returned Reevess office
until Friday October 23, 2015, identified another 9002 emails, which approximately 2000
have been deemed responsive the FOIA requests, but require further review, redaction and
collation.
14. Reaves also notified Judicial Watch October 27th the results the second search, and
asked for extra ten days review and produce those emails, i.e., Friday, November
2015. Exh. October 27, 2015 Reaves Letter.
15. response, Judicial Watch requested daily rolling production completed documents.
Exh. G-Email Thread October 27-28, 2015. However, FCPS could not comply with that
request and still meet its other operational responsibilities. Reaves explained, due the
extraordinary scope the seven requests (emails involving all school board members
and from all 25,000 FCPS personnel over month period) and limited staff, FCPS could
not produce the documents daily basis, but could provide them three installments,
Friday, October 301h, Tuesday, November 3rd and Friday, November 6th. Id.
16. Judicial Watch responded abandoning its original request for daily rolling production
and now demanded all documents noon Monday, November 2015, noting that
the leading FOIA requestor and litigator the country with more than years
experience compelling the processing and production public records ... and ...
your organization serious about its work, you can easily move through the 2000 pages
three days-certainly Noon Monday. There should overtime and weekend efforts
made meet your legal obligation. Id.
17. Despite the fact that Judicial Watch waited five months respond FCPSs request for
payment the costs associated with the processing the seven extremely broad FOIA
requests, Respondent has refused grant FCPSs eminently reasonable request for ten-day
extension.
18. Given the tenor Judicial Watchs response October 28, 2015, and the inability FCPS meet Respondents unreasonable demands, FCPS was forced file this Petition for
extension time provide the additional documents November 2015.
19. Due well-publicized restrictions and limited staffing both teaching and administrative
positions, FCPS simply does not have sufficient employees produce documents daily
basis meet Judicial Watchs Monday, November 2nd deadline. (Since 2008, FCPSs
operating budget has been reduced nearly half billion dollars.)
20. Reaves, the only full time employee responsible for FOIA requests, handles roughly
FOIA requests month, with only part-time management technician assist her. (Reaves
Department lost another management technician budget cuts) Reaves currently has four
other pending FOIA requests and associated deadlines meet, one this Friday, October 30th,
two Monday, November 2nd and another Wednesday, November 4th. The only
paralegal the Office Division Counsel has similar obligations, including compliance
with subpoena issued the Fairfax Circuit Court criminal matter which returnable Friday, November 2015.
21. those School Board employees responsible for these operations were forced devote
every waking hour prior Monday, November 2nd meet the unreasonable deadline
imposed Judicial Watch, they could not meet other responsibilities essential the School
Boards operations. (Nor does FOIA impose duty public bodies require employees
work overtime, weekends holidays, demanded Judicial Watch. contrast, the
Acts compliance deadlines refer working days.)
WHEREFORE, the foregoing grounds, FCPS asks this Honorable Court for entry
Order extending the timeline which FCPS must produce the most recent emails responsive
Judicial Watchs FOIA requests through close business Friday, November 2015.
Dated: October 30, 2015
Respectfully Submitted,
FAIRFAX COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD Counsel
BLANKINGSHIP KEITH,
4020 University Drive, Suite 300
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
(703) 691-1235 (telephone)
(703
-3<
By:
ounse/ for Petitioner
CERTIFICATE SERVICE hereby certify that this 301h day October, 2015, true and correct copy the
foregoing Petition for Additional Time Respond FOIA Requests has been served on:
James Wilson, Esq., Registered Agent
Judicial Watch
2002 Kenmore Street
Arlington, 22207-3711
and emailed to:
Paul Orfanedes, Esq., Secretary/
Treasurer and Lead Litigation Attorney
Chris Ferrell, Director Investigations Research
Judicial Watch
425 Third St. SW, Ste. 8000
Washington, 20024
Judicial
Watcli
Because one
i-5 above llie la.wt
April27, 2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAIL EMAIL
Brandy Reaves
Public Information Specialist, FOIA Officer
8ii5 Gatehouse Rd.,
Falls Church, 22042
email: bareavcs@fcps.edu
Re~
Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Andrea Lafferty, Fairfax County resident, Judicial
Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and elected
officials electronic, including but not limited to, email and text correspondence regarding FCPS
Policy 1450, transgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant Virginia
Freedom oflnformation Act 2.2-3700, seq.): All correspondence FCPS Board member at-large Ryan McElveen with, copying
blind-copying any School Board member. All correspondence FCPS Board member at-large Ryan McElveen with, copying
blind-copying Dr. Karen Garza, Michael Molloy, Marty Smith, Virginia Attorney
General Mark Herring members his staff, Virginia General Assembly members,
Equality Virginia, and/or FCPS Human Resources personnel
The timeframe for this request October 2014 the present
Any reasonably segregable portion arecord otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3)
425 Third St., SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024 Tel: (202) 646-5172or1-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199 ... Email: info@JudicialWatch.org www.JudiciaJWatch.org
EXHIBIT
::i
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
April 27, 2015 the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw records into distinct editorial works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verdict and Weekly Update and
free works Corruption Chronicles and Investigations and Research Blog. However, the case
that our request for fee waiver denied, are willing pay $200, but ask that
notified advance cost estimates pursuant Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(F). look forward receiving records five (5) business days Va. Code Ann. 2.23704(E). facilitate the response, request records provided electronic fonnat via
email Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(G). you not understand this request any p01tion thereof, you feel you
require clarification this request any portion thereof~ please contact immediately 202-646-5172 kbailey@judicialwatch.org.
Kate Bailey
Judicial Watch, Inc.
Judicial
Watcli
Because one above the law/
April 27, 2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAU, EMAIL
Brandy Reaves
Public Information Specialist, FOIA Officer
8115 Gatehouse Rd.,
Falls Church, 22042
email: bareaves@fcps.edu
Re: Virginia Freedom oflnformation Act Request
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Andrea Lafferty, Fairfax County resident, Judicial
Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and elected
officials electronic, including but not limited to, email and text correspondence regarding FCPS
Policy 1450, transgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant Virginia
Freedom Information Act 2.2-3700, seq.): correspondence FCPS Board member at-large Ilryong Moon with, copying
blind-copying any School Board member. All correspondence FCPS Board member at-large Ilryong Moon with, copying
blind-copying Dr. Karen Garza, Michael Molloy, Marty Smith, Virginia Attorney
General Mark Herring members his staff, Virginia General Assembly members,
Equality Virginia, and/or FCPS Human Resources personnel
The timeframe for this request October 2014 the present.
Any reasonably segregable portion record otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3)
425 Third St., SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024 Tel: (202) 646-5172 1-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199 Email: info@JudicialWatch.org www.JudicialWatch.org
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
April 27, 2015 the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw recolds into distinct editorial works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verdict and Weekly Update and
free works Corruption Chronicles and Investigations and Research Blog. However, the case
that our request for fee waiver denied, are willing pay $200, but ask that
notified advance cost estimates pursuant Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(F). look forward receiving records five (5) business days Va. Code Ann. 2.23704(E). facilitate the response, request records provided electronic format via
email Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(G). you not understand this request any portion thereof, you feel you
require clarification this request any portion thereof, please contact immediately 202-646-5172 kbailey@judicialwatch.org.
Sjnct:rcly,
Kate Bailey
Judicial Watch, Inc.
Judicial
7.. li.~i
vvatc
Because one above the law!
April29,2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAJL EMAIL
Brandy Reaves
Public Information Specialist, FOIA Officer
8115 Gatehouse Rd.
Falls Church, 22042
email: bareaves@fcps.edu
Re: Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Keith and Lauren Appell, Fairfax County residents,
Judicial Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and
elected officials electronic, including but not limited to, email and text correspondence
regarding FCPS Policy 1450, transgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant
Virginia Freedom Information Act 2.2-3700, seq.): All correspondence FCPS Board member Jane Sti:a.Y8~h, copying blind-copying
any School Board member. All correspondence FCPS Board member Jane Strauss with, copying blind-copying
Dr. Karen Garza, Michael Molloy, Marty Smith, Virginia Attorney General Mark
Herring members his staff, Virginia General Assembly members, Equality Virginia,
and/or FCPS Human Resources personnel
October 2014 ......_ present.
the
The timeframe for this request ....--Any reasonably segregable portion record otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3)
425 Third St., SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024
Tel: (202) 646-5172 1-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199, Email: info@JudicialWatch.org
www.JudicialWatch.org
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom oflnformation Act Request
April 29, 2015 the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw records into distinct editorial works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verdict and Weekly Update and
free works Corruption Chronicles and Investigations and Research Blog. However, the case
that our request for fee waiver denied, are willing pay $200, but ask that
notified advance cost estimates pursuant Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(F). look forward receiving records five (5) business days Va. Code Ann. 2.23704(E). facilitate the response, request records provided electronic fonnat via
email Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(G). you not understand this request any portion thereof, you feel you
require clarification this request any portion thereof, please contact immediately 202-646-5172 kbailey@judicialwatch.org.
Sincerely,
Kate Bailey
Judicial Watch, Inc.
Judicial
Watcli
Beca1ise one above the law/
April 29, 2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAIL EMAIL
Brandy Reaves
Public Information Specialist, FOIA Officer
8115 Gatehouse Rd.
Falls Cbmch, 22042
email: bareaves@fcps.edu
Re: .Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Mychele Brickner, Fairfax County resident, Judicial
Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and elected
officials electronic, including but not limited to, email and text correspondence regarding FCPS
Policy 1450, tcansgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant V.irginia
Freedom Infonnation Act 2.2-3700, seq.): All correspoudenceby FCPS Board member Kathy Smith with, copying blind-copying
any School Board member. All correspondence FCPS Board member Kathy Smith with, copying blind-copying
Dr. Karen Garza, Michael Molloy. Marty Smith, Virginia Attorney General Mark
Herring members his staff, Virginia General Assembly members, Equality Virginia,
and/or FCPS Human Resources personnel
The timeframe for this request October 2014 the present.
Any reasonably segregable portion record otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3) --- -425 Third St., SW, Suite 00, Washington, 20024 Tel: (202) 646-5172 1-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199 Email: info@JudicialWatch.org www.JudicialWatch.org
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
April 29, 2015 the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw records into distinct editorial works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verd.let and Weekly Update and
free works Corruption Chronicles and Investigations and Research Blog. However, the case
that 011r request for fee waiver denied, are willing pay $200, but ask that
notified advance cost estimates pursuant Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(F). look forward receiving records five (5) business days Va. Code Ann. 2.23704(E). facilitate the response, request records provided electronic format via
email Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(G). you not understand this request any portion thereof, you feel you
require clarification this request any po1tio11 thereof, please contact immediately 202-646-5172 kbailey@judicialwatch.org.
Sincerely,
Kate Bailey
Judicial Watch, Inc.
Judicial
Watcli
Because one above the law!
May 2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAIL EMAIL
Fairfax County Public Schools
John Torre, Public Information Officer
8115 Gatehouse Road
Falls Church, 22042
Re: Virginia Freedom Information Act Reauest
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Ron Johnson, Fairfax County resident, Judicial
Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and elected
officials electronic, including but not limited to, email and text correspondence regarding FCPS
Policy 1450, transgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant Virginia
Freedom Information Act 2.2-3700, seq.): For Hunter Mill District School Board Member Pat Hvnes, Federal Legislative Liaison,
electronic email comniunications relating FCPS Policy 1450, gender identity policy,
transgender and gender equality issues which are with, from copying any the
following: FCPS personnel: Dr. Karen Gar~ Dr. Steven Lockard, Kim Dockery, Marty Smith,
Susan Quinn, Christine Donohue, Michael Molloy and Phyllis Pajardo,
School Board Members,
Federal Congressional members and staff,
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring and staff,
Virginia General Assembly members and staff,
Virginia School Board Association Board and staff, and
425 Third St., SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024 Tel: (202) 646-5172 1-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199 Email: info@JudicialWatch.org www.JudicialWatch.org
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom oflnformation Act Request
May S,2015
Equality Virginia. For Springfield District Schoo! Board Member Elizabeth Schultz, Chahman, Public
Engagement Committee, email communications relating FCPS Policy 1450, gender identity policy,
transgender and gender equality issues with all members of, advisors to, the Public
Engagement Committee, and all Public Engagement Committee meetings, notes, agendas a11d schedules for public
engagement this matter, .including any scheduled public engagement which was planned
but not actually conducted.
The timeframe for this request ber 2014 the present.
Any reasonably segregable portion record otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3) the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw records into distinct editorial works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verdict and Weekly Update and
free works Corruption Chronicles and Investigations and Research Blog. However, the case
that our request for fee waiver denied, are willing pay $200, but ask that
notified advance cost es6mates pursuant Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(.F). look forward receiving records :five (5) business days Va. Code Ann. 2.23704(E). facilitate the response, request records provided electronic format via
email Va. Code Ann. 2.2-3704(0). you not understand this request any portion thereof, you feel you
require clarification this request any po1tion thereof, please contact immediately 202-646-5172 kbailey@judicialwatch.org.
Sincerely,
Kate Bailey
Judicial Watch, Inc.
Judicial
Watcli
Because one above the law!
May 2015
VIA CERTIFIED MAIL EMAIL
Fairfax County Public Schools
John Torre, Public Information Officer
8115 Gatehouse Road
Falls Church, 22042
Re; Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
Dear Sir/Madam: member the news media with circulation the Commonwealth Virginia Va.
Code Ann. 2.2-3704(A), and behalf Sharol Copeland, Fairfax County resident, Judicial
Watch, Inc. requests the following records documenting public school system and elected
officials electronic, including but not limite~ ~mail aud text correSJ,)Dndence regarding FCPS
Policy 1450, transgender, gender identity and/or same sex marriage, pursuant Virginia
Freedom Information Act 2.2-3700, seq.): Email communications at-large members Ilryong Moon, T_;d Vell off and Ryan
McElveen relating FCPS Non~Discrimination Policy 1450 from October 2014
present with members the public, FCPS staff, state officials and their staff and/or
federal officials and their staff. Email communications Tamara Derenak Kaufax. Lee District and_chairman,
relating FCPS Non-Discrimination Policy from October 2014 present with
members the public, FCPS staff, state officials and their staff and/or federal
officials and their staff.
The timeframe for this request October 2014 the present.
Any reasonably segregable portion record otherwise exempt from disclosure
required made available after deletion the portions that are exempted law and
425 Third St., SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024 Tel: (202) 646-5172 l-888-593-8442
FAX: (202) 646-5199 Email: info@JudicialWatch.org www.JudicialWatch.org
Custodian Records
Virginia Freedom Information Act Request
May 2015
written explanation must provided why certain information was redacted. Va. Code Ann.
2.2-3704(B)(3) the publics interest, ask for fee waiver. media organization with circulation Virginia, have proven method for turning raw records into distinct editorfal works and
disseminating them the public through our subscription The Verdict and Weel