Council: Governor can’t keep rights restoration list secret

STATE-NEWSRICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Virginia’s advisory council on open records has argued that Gov. Terry McAuliffe shouldn’t keep secret a list of felons whose voting rights are believed to have been restored.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council issued the opinion Tuesday, arguing that the list doesn’t qualify as an executive working paper.

The list contains roughly 206,000 felons believed to meet the criteria of McAuliffe’s rights restoration order.

The council also says that exemption doesn’t apply to the list since it was distributed to the Virginia Department of Elections for voter registration purposes.

McAuliffe spokesman Brian Coy says the administration disagrees with the council and will continue to keep the list confidential until an official clemency report is made to the general assembly next year.

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