The Michigan Freedom of Information ProjectThe Michigan Freedom of Information Project ("MIFOIP") is a web-based project designed to provide general information and resources to Michigan citizens for their quest to have access to governmental decision-making. The project is sponsored by Outside Legal Counsel PLC, a Michigan law firm which prosecutes violations of Michigan transparency laws like FOIA and OMA. Access to timely information is the most critical aspect of a free and successful society.
There is an old adege in the political world--everyone knows who is president, but few know who serves on their town councils--and it is the town councils where individuals have the real power to affect one's life.
Borne out of the discovery that so little is available online, the goal is simply to assist students, the media, watchdog groups and citizens in exercising their rights to access materials, facts, and documents which are created, used, and controlled by their governments and its army of civil servants. What started as a pleasant discovery has led to a passion for the power of sunshine laws like FOIA and OMA and the access it provides to any citizen who wishes to use it.
One of the true hallmarks of good government is openness and transparency. Yet, openness and transparency are easy to preach but difficult to adhere, especially when government officials who control the records screw up or drop the ball. Laws like FOIA and OMA do not recognize an embarassing mistake as a valid reason for officials to lurk in the governmental shadows. Yes, government officials and employees are human and they make mistakes. However, their mistakes can have longlasting impacts and serious consequences on its citizenry if such mistakes are not identified, corrected, and prevented from happening again. Sadly, too many simply want to brush mistakes under the rug.
Make no mistake, there are hundreds of hardworking government officials who carry of heavy burden of improving the lives of those in their communities. However, these same good officials sadly get associated with the few bad apples who use the power of government for their own questionable purposes. Sadly, the "good" officials do or say little to point out the bad apples. And without the power to "check" what goes on at these countless meetings held in cities, towns, villages, and counties, where the real-world decisions are made, it is impossible for the causual observer to find out more.
So, it is with the ideal of good government, the good apples, and a continuing distaste of the few bad apples, that this website was created.
--The Michigan Freedom of Information Project
FOIA - What is FOIA
- Fees for a FOIA Request
- How to File a FOIA Request
- Review Procedures and Penalties
- FOIA Request Generator
- Copy of FOIA Statute
- I need a FOIA attorney
OMA - What is OMA
- Basic Rights and Responsibilites
- Notice Requirements
- Closed Meetings and Sessions
- Keeping Minutes
- Enforcement and Penalties
- Copy of OMA Statute
- I need an OMA attorney
About MIFOIP - About the Project
Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants...
Louis D. Brandeis
in Other People's Money