2021 Regular Session
To: Judiciary, Division A
By: Senator(s) Wiggins
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 25-41-7, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO INCLUDE CERTAIN DISCUSSIONS BY THE BOARDS OF TRUSTEES, A COMMITTEE THEREOF, AND/OR THE GOVERNING ENTITY OF PUBLIC HOSPITALS AS A REASON A PUBLIC BODY MAY HOLD AN EXECUTIVE SESSION; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 25-41-7, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
25-41-7. (1) Any public body may enter into executive session for the transaction of public business; however, all meetings of any public body shall commence as an open meeting, and an affirmative vote of three-fifths (3/5) of all members present shall be required to declare an executive session.
(2) The procedure to be followed by any public body in declaring an executive session shall be as follows: Any member shall have the right to request by motion a closed determination upon the issue of whether or not to declare an executive session. The motion, by majority vote, shall require the meeting to be closed for a preliminary determination of the necessity for executive session. No other business shall be transacted until the discussion of the nature of the matter requiring executive session has been completed and a vote, as required in subsection (1) hereof, has been taken on the issue.
(3) An executive session shall be limited to matters allowed to be exempted from open meetings by subsection (4) of this section. The reason for holding an executive session shall be stated in an open meeting before the executive session is held, and the reason so stated shall be recorded in the minutes of the meeting. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require that any meeting be closed to the public, nor shall any executive session be used to circumvent or to defeat the purposes of this chapter.
(4) A public body may hold an executive session pursuant to this section for one or more of the following reasons:
(a) Transaction of business and discussion of personnel matters relating to the job performance, character, professional competence, or physical or mental health of a person holding a specific position, or matters relating to the terms of any potential or current employment or services agreement with any physicians or other employees of public hospitals, including any discussion of any person applying for medical staff privileges or membership with a public hospital.
(b) Strategy sessions or negotiations with respect to prospective litigation, litigation or issuance of an appealable order when an open meeting would have a detrimental effect on the litigating position of the public body.
(c) Transaction of business and discussion regarding the report, development or course of action regarding security personnel, plans or devices.
(d) Investigative proceedings by any public body regarding allegations of misconduct or violation of law.
(e) Any body of the Legislature which is meeting on matters within the jurisdiction of that body.
(f) Cases of extraordinary emergency which would pose immediate or irrevocable harm or damage to persons or property, or both, within the jurisdiction of the public body.
(g) Transaction of business and discussion regarding the prospective purchase, sale or leasing of lands.
(h) Discussions between a school board and individual students who attend a school within the jurisdiction of the school board or the parents or teachers of the students regarding problems of the students or their parents or teachers.
(i) Transaction of business and discussion concerning the preparation of tests for admission to practice in recognized professions.
(j) Transaction of business and discussions or negotiations regarding the location, relocation or expansion of a business, medical service or an industry.
(k) Transaction of business and discussions regarding employment or job performance of a person in a specific position or termination of an employee holding a specific position. The exemption provided by this paragraph includes transaction of business and discussion in executive session by the board of trustees of a public hospital regarding any employee or medical staff member or applicant for medical staff privileges and any such individual's credentialing, health, performance, salary, raises or disciplinary action. The exemption provided by this paragraph includes the right to enter into executive session concerning a line item in a budget which might affect the termination of an employee or employees. All other budget items shall be considered in open meetings and final budgetary adoption shall not be taken in executive session.
(l) Discussions regarding material or data exempt from the Mississippi Public Records Act of 1983 pursuant to Section 25-11-121.
(m) Transaction of
business and discussion by the boards of trustees of public hospitals, * * *
a committee thereof, and/or its governing
entity, regarding prospective strategic business decisions of public
hospitals, including, without limitation, decisions to open a new
service line, implement capital improvements, or file applications for
certificates of need or determinations of nonreviewability with the State
Department of Health.
(n) Transaction of business of the boards of trustees of public hospitals or a committee thereof that would require discussion of any identifiable patient information, including, without limitation, patient complaints, patients' accounts, patients receiving charity care, or treatment that could be identified to a patient.
(5) The total vote on the question of entering into an executive session shall be recorded and spread upon the minutes of the public body.
(6) Any vote whereby an executive session is declared shall be applicable only to that particular meeting on that particular day.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2021.