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Official Opinions


October 2003
Please click on Opinion number to view entire opinion.

Opinion # Requestor



The Honorable Geraldine M. Whiting
Commissioner of the Revenue for Arlington Co.
Landlord or managing agent of apartment complex is not prohibited from releasing to commissioner of revenue tenant list and vehicle information. Tenant’s prior written consent to release such information is not required. Commissioner is prohibited from divulging tax information acquired in performance of his or her duties with respect to personal property of tenant.


The Honorable Linda T. Puller
Member, Senate of Virginia
Whether particular organization is ‘private, denominational, or parochial school’ under Virginia’s compulsory attendance statute requires factual review that is inappropriate for Attorney General.


The Honorable Gary W. Waters
Sheriff for the City of Portsmouth
Prisoner-workers from Portsmouth city jail may work on state, county and city property outside city; sheriff has no authority to supervise prisoners working outside sheriff’s jurisdiction.


Mr. William B. Harvey
Secretary, Albemarle Co. Electoral Board
Prohibited political activities of local electoral board members and general registrars include (1) holding elective office while serving in appointive office; (2) serving as chairman of state, local or district level political party committee (electoral board member only); (3) serving as chairman of political party or as any other officer of state, local or district level political party committee (general registrar only); (4) serving as paid worker, and in case of general registrar, volunteer, for candidate for nomination or election to office filled by election in whole or in part by qualified voters of jurisdiction served by electoral board member or registrar; and (5) being paid or volunteering to solicit signatures for nominating petitions for candidates for public office in public building owned or leased by county or city served by electoral board (electoral board member only). Local electoral board members and general registrars should perform official duties in nonpartisan fashion. When not performing official duties, such officers may participate in partisan political activities not in conflict with prohibitions in §§ 24.2-106, 24.2-106.1, 24.2-110.


The Honorable Henry A. Vanover
Judge, Twenty-Ninth Judicial Circuit
Court may modify sentence of defendant completing Department of Corrections’ Therapeutic Community Program only if such modification occurs within 21 days of entry of sentencing order.


The Honorable Michael D. Wolfe
Clerk, Circuit Court of Alleghany Co.
Persons appointed as marriage celebrants before July 1, 2003, are not limited to performing marriages in their resident jurisdiction. Persons appointed by court order on or after July 1, 2003, are limited to performing marriages in their resident jurisdiction; change of residence to another jurisdiction terminates person’s authority to perform marriages in former resident jurisdiction.


The Honorable Kevin G. Miller
Member, Senate of Virginia
Authority for school board to discipline student who possesses unloaded firearm in locked vehicle trunk on school property or at school-sponsored activity.


The Honorable Lenny Millholland
Sheriff for the City of Winchester
100-road-mile qualification applicable to sheriffs transporting persons certified for involuntarily admission to hospital applies to magistrates directing transportation of persons under emergency custody orders or temporary detention orders.


Mr. William M. Hackworth
City Attorney for the City of Roanoke
Authority for local governing body to adopt ordinance exempting from taxation property within expanded portion of downtown service district.


The Honorable Yvonne G. Smith
Clerk, Circuit Court of Henrico County
Authority for trial court in criminal case to order donation or destruction of human biological evidence where no appeal is timely filed, unless court imposes death sentence or defendant files motion to store, retain, and preserve such evidence. Court may order donation or destruction of evidence received in criminal case on appeal after exhaustion of all appellate remedies. Felon not sentenced to death must file motion to store human biological evidence before court disposes of such evidence; court is not required to wait indefinitely for motion to be filed.