House OKs bill to subject governor, Legislature to FOIA

Michigan Capitol Building, rotunda
This file photo shows the interior of rotunda dome at the state Capitol Building in Lansing, Mich.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan House has voted to make the governor’s office and the Legislature subject to the state’s public records law.

Michigan’s 40-year-old Freedom of Information Act explicitly exempts the governor’s office from records requests. And a 1986 opinion by the state attorney general says lawmakers also intended to exclude themselves.

Michigan is one of two states to wholly exempt the governor’s office from public records requests. Michigan also is among a minority of states where lawmakers are exempt.

The bills approved 100-6 Wednesday by the Republican-led House would exempt from disclosure communications between constituents and legislators along with other certain information.

The legislation may stall in the Senate, whose Republican leader appears unenthusiastic.

Supporters say subjecting the governor and legislators to FOIA would show that politicians are committed to transparency.

Comments are closed.