Bellino sponsors bill to increase government transparency

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Bipartisan bills subject governor’s office, Legislature to open records rules

Bellino sponsors bill to increase government transparency

State Rep. Joe Bellino, seated, submits legislation to the clerk for enrollment as a bill. He is joined by colleagues who also sponsored pieces of the 11-bill bipartisan package to increase government transparency.

State Rep. Joe Bellino, of Monroe, today introduced legislation as part of an 11-bill bipartisan plan to make state government more accountable to the people of Michigan.

Bellino joined representatives from both sides of the aisle today in announcing the reform plan to make the governor and lieutenant governor subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and create a set of similar rules pertaining to state representatives and senators called the Legislative Open Records Act (LORA).

“We’re here to serve the public, and people deserve to see what we’re doing so they can hold us accountable,” said Bellino. “Taxpayers are trusting us with their hard-earned money, I don’t blame them for wanting to keep track of how it’s being spent.”

The bills are similar to a legislative effort that was approved by the House last session, but did not reach the governor’s desk for consideration.

“This legislation is critically important,” said Bellino. “Year after year, Michigan comes in with one of the worst rankings in the Center for Public Integrity’s State Integrity Investigation, and many residents don’t have faith in their state government. It’s time to give the people the transparency they’ve been asking for and restore their confidence in government.”