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Tuesday, October 30, 2012 - 9:57am

Universities Can Close Discipline Hearings

The Georgia Attorney General's Office has told University of Georgia officials that the state's colleges and universities may close student disciplinary hearings to the public under Georgia's Open Meeting Act.

Closing the hearings would mark a significant change in how they've been handled in the past. They've been open to the public since 1993.

Assistant Attorney General Kelly Campanella announced the decision in a letter, which was sent to UGA officials last week.

UGA sought the Attorney General's opinion after The Red & Black, an independent student newspaper at UGA, requested records from student conduct hearings.

Georgia's open government laws were revamped by the state Legislature during its 2012 session.