The Arizona Revised Statutes have been updated to include the revised sections from the 55th Legislature, 2nd Regular Session. Please note that the next update of this compilation will not take place until after the conclusion of the 56th Legislature, 1st Regular Session, which convenes in January 2023.
This online version of the Arizona Revised Statutes is primarily maintained for legislative drafting purposes and reflects the version of law that is effective on January 1st of the year following the most recent legislative session. The official version of the Arizona Revised Statutes is published by Thomson Reuters.
38-431.07. Violations; enforcement; civil penalty; removal from office; in camera review
A. Any person affected by an alleged violation of this article, the attorney general or the county attorney for the county in which an alleged violation of this article occurred may commence a suit in the superior court in the county in which the public body ordinarily meets, for the purpose of requiring compliance with, or the prevention of violations of, this article, by the public body as a whole, or to determine the applicability of this article to matters or legal actions of the public body. The attorney general may also commence a suit in the superior court in the county in which the public body ordinarily meets against an individual member of a public body for a knowing violation of this article, and in such a suit the court may impose a civil penalty against each person who knowingly violates this article or who knowingly aids, agrees to aid or attempts to aid in violating this article and order equitable relief as the court deems appropriate in the circumstances. The court may impose a civil penalty not to exceed five hundred dollars for the second offense and not to exceed two thousand five hundred dollars for the third and subsequent offenses. If the court imposes a civil penalty against an individual member of the public body who knowingly violates this article, the public body may not pay the civil penalty on behalf of, or otherwise reimburse, the individual against whom the civil penalty has been imposed. If the court finds that a person who might otherwise be liable under this subsection objected to the action of the public body and the objection is noted on a public record, the court may choose not to impose a civil penalty on that person. The civil penalties awarded pursuant to this section shall be deposited into the general fund of the public body concerned. The court may also order payment to a successful plaintiff in a suit brought under this section of the plaintiff's reasonable attorney fees, by the defendant state, the political subdivision of the state or the incorporated city or town of which the public body is a part or to which it reports. If the court determines that a public officer with intent to deprive the public of information knowingly violated any provision of this article, the court may remove the public officer from office and shall assess the public officer or a person who knowingly aided, agreed to aid or attempted to aid the public officer in violating this article, or both, with all of the costs and attorney fees awarded to the plaintiff pursuant to this section.
B. A public body shall not expend public monies to employ or retain legal counsel to provide legal services or representation to the public body or any of its officers in any legal action commenced pursuant to any provisions of this article, unless the public body has authority to make the expenditure pursuant to other provisions of law and takes a legal action at a properly noticed open meeting approving the expenditure before incurring any obligation or indebtedness.
C. In any action brought pursuant to this section challenging the validity of an executive session, the court may review in camera the minutes of the executive session, and if the court in its discretion determines that the minutes are relevant and that justice so demands, the court may disclose to the parties or admit in evidence part or all of the minutes.