PoliticsPress Release

Attorney General: Summary of Opinions Released for 12/30/21

Opinion Number: 2021-057 Requestor:   Ballinger, Bob The Honorable

The Assessment Coordination Division of the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration provides annual equalization board seminars for those individuals requiring recertification.  Is online training provided for in the law, or is it specifically prohibited that the training required for recertification be conducted online?  RESPONSE:  Arkansas Code section 26-27-324 charges the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration’s Assessment Coordination Division (ACD) with providing comprehensive training and education to members of county equalization boards.  The statute does not contain any specifications or restrictions regarding the delivery format of these trainings.  Therefore, it is my opinion that ACD may conduct comprehensive trainings online for members of county equalizations boards.

Opinion Number: 2021-100 Requestor:   Stokes, Russell The Honorable

Is the decision of the City of Cherokee Village to release records of American Rescue Plan Act (“ARPA”) payments to city employees in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request consistent with provisions of the FOIA?  RESPONSE:  My duty under subdivision 25-19-105(c)(3)(B) is to state whether the custodian’s decision as to the release of “personnel or evaluation records” is consistent with the FOIA.  Because I have not seen any records that the City has determined to be responsive to the instant FOIA request, I cannot opine about the releasability of any specific document or the need to redact any specific piece of information from an otherwise releasable document.  I can state generally, however, that the custodian’s apparent decision in this case that the payment records are personnel records that are subject to release appears consistent with the FOIA.  A FOIA requester’s identity or motive for making the request is generally irrelevant to whether a record must be released.  And I have no information that would support a reversal of the custodian’s decision to release the records.

Opinion Number: 2021-072 Requestor:  English, Jane The Honorable

Does Ark. Code Ann. sec. 27-37-305(a) require that every motor vehicle have a rearview mirror attached to the inside of the motor vehicle’s front windshield?  Q2) If a rearview mirror is not required to be attached to the inside of a motor vehicle’s front windshield under Ark. Code Ann. sec. 27-37-305(a), does the law require that the rearview mirror be attached in any other particular location? RESPONSE: The answer to both of your questions is “no,” the statute contains no such requirements.

Opinion Number: 2021-064  Requestor:  Smith, Stu The Honorable

Would the Arkansas Unclaimed Property Act apply to a “public water authority” as it would a “public utility”?  RESPONSE:  I take it your question pertains to a water authority formed under the Water Authority Act (Ark. Code Ann. § 4-35-101 et seq.).  With that understanding, the answer is “no” because a water authority is not a “utility” for purposes of the controlling definition of that term under the Arkansas Unclaimed Property Act.

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