State Rep. Bryan Posthumus today announced House passage of a government transparency bill he introduced.
“This transparency legislation is central to our democracy,” said Rep. Posthumus. “We work in the capital on taxpayers’ dimes and have an obligation to use their resources responsibly. They deserve to know what goes on behind closed doors on state time.”
The Freedom of Information Act currently allows Michiganders to request access to public records pertaining to local governments, school districts, and state departments. Michigan is one of only two states to exclude the Legislature and governor’s office from these laws.
“Michiganders become skeptical of government operations when politicians abuse their power to buy the silence of state directors,” said Rep. Posthumus. “It shouldn’t take a wave of national backlash for a record to be opened, it should just be standard procedure.”
The Michigan House today approved Posthumus’ legislation, House Bill 4387, with unanimous bipartisan support. The bill creates new Legislative Open Records Act provisions to address the fees a public body may charge for searching and copying public records, mirroring Section 4 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The bill authorizes a public body to charge fees for the actual cost of mailing and duplication or publication of records, including legal counseling and administrative costs associated with requests.
Rep. Posthumus talks about his new bill that would postpone a farmer’s jury duty service until after the period between April 1 through November 30, saying people working in ag need the flexibility to get crops planted and harvested.
State Rep. Bryan Posthumus, of Kent County, today introduced House Bill 4550, which would allow farmers summoned for jury duty to be excused from service during the harvest season spanning from April to November.
Rep. Posthumus talks about passage Thursday of a series of bills, including legislation he sponsored, that would make the Michigan Legislature and the Executive Office of the Governor subject to freedom of information and open record requirements.