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In a special investigation to mark Sunshine Week, an annual celebration of government openness, Carolina Public Press probed the closed sessions held by Western North Carolina’s county boards of commissioners in 2014.

In a monthlong investigation, CPP asked the state’s 18 westernmost counties to release all unsealed minutes of closed sessions they convened last year. Responses varied, with some counties releasing substantial selections of minutes and some releasing none at all.

Below are the unsealed minutes that have been released thus far. Officials with some area counties said they will be reviewing last year’s closed minutes soon to consider unsealing additional records; as CPP obtains them, we’ll add them here.

Buncombe

Buncombe County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Buncombe County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Graham

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Graham County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Graham County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Haywood

Haywood County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Haywood County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Henderson

Henderson County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Henderson County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Jackson

Jackson County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Jackson County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Polk

Polk County Closed Sessions Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Polk County Closed Sessions Minutes 2014 (Text)

Transylvania

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Transylvania County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Transylvania County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Watauga

Watauga County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (PDF)
Watauga County Closed Session Minutes 2014 (Text)

Jon Elliston

Jon Elliston is the lead contributing open government reporter at Carolina Public Press. Contact him at jelliston@carolinapublicpress.org.

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  1. I am an activist in Watauga County. I recently made a public record request to inspect the closed session minutes. It took months to get a reply. I thought it was because the county was getting the attorney to review the minutes to bring them up to date. However, that was not the case. When I arrived today to inspect, I found they have a rule that they only up date them once a year. And, I found out they are in electronic format and I paid $5 to have them put on a disk. I asked for these minutes so that I could file my own complaint. I appreciate what you guys are doing. Contact me. I can be of assistance.