A. Any aggrieved person may institute a proceeding for injunction or mandamus against any agency that has engaged, is engaged, or is about to engage in any acts in violation of the provisions of this chapter. Venue for the petition shall be addressed as follows:
3. In a case involving a state agency, including a public institution of higher education, to the general district court or the circuit court of the residence of the aggrieved party or of the City of Richmond.
B. If the court finds a violation of the provisions of this chapter, the petitioner shall be entitled to recover reasonable costs and attorney fees from the agency if the petitioner substantially prevails on the merits of the case, unless special circumstances would make an award unjust. In making this determination, a court may consider, among other things, the reliance of the agency on an opinion of the Attorney General or a decision of a court that substantially supports the agency’s position.
2009, c. 213.