Leveling the price of the freedom of information

Starting this summer, most public bodies in Michigan will be somewhat more accountable, a bit more transparent, in allowing people to discover what they do and how they do it.

The so-called Freedom of Information Act — so-called because it’s studded with exceptions and doesn't apply to the legislature or courts — was modified during the just-ended legislative session to give people a bit more leverage to press government for information.

The changes are designed to curb abusive fees and encourage prompt compliance with the law, according to an analysis by Butzel Long, the First Amendment attorneys for the Michigan Press Association. And while the law firm's FOIA highlights were designed for the journalists, it's important to remember that FOIA isn't just a press issue. Continue>>>