Press Releases


ADV OM 18-01 In Re: South Foster Volunteer Fire Company

Legal counsel for the South Foster Volunteer Fire Company ("SFVFC") sought an OMA advisory opinion concerning whether the SFVFC is a "public body" subject to the OMA. Based on Solas v. Emergency Hiring Council, 774 A.2d 820 (R.I. 2001) and Pontarelli v. Rhode Island Board Council on Elementary and Secondary Education, 151 A.3d 301 (R.I. 2016), as well as this Department's previous findings, we looked to the SFVFC's federal income tax forms, Articles of Incorporation, and By-Laws to assist our analysis. The evidence demonstrated, inter alia, that the SFVFC is a nonprofit corporation that selects its own members independent of any governmental or public approval process, that the SFVFC provides no medical benefits and no pensions to its members, and that the SFVFC does not have any taxing authority. Based on the specific evidence presented, we opined that the SFVFC is not a "public body" under the OMA.

Related links

Share this: