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Enforcement of the Open Meetings Act (OMA) in Michigan

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Bill Search and Legislative Information | New York State Assembly
News and Information from the New York State Assembly
This is how enforcement of the Open Meetings Act (OMA) works in Michigan:
Penalties for Violating OMA
Any person, including the state attorney general or a local prosecuting attorney, can commence a lawsuit to compel compliance or to enjoin further noncompliance in local Circuit Court.
If successful in obtaining relief in the action (i.e. an injunction), the person is entitled to recover court costs and actual attorney fees.
Criminal Penalties
The first time a public official intentionally violates OMA, he or she can be punished by a maximum fine of $1,000.
For a second offense within the same term of office, he or she can found guilty of a misdemeanor and be fined up to $2,000 and/or jailed for a maximum of one year.
A public official who intentionally violates the act is also personally liable for actual and exemplary damages up to $500, plus court costs and attorney fees.
In NY the Attorney General will not assist you in any way, there are no fines or criminal penalties, no personal liability and good luck with getting your attorney fees paid.
Our bill to at least make it easier to get attorney fees sponsored by Assemblymember Steck and Senator John Liu, passed the Senate in June. We will continue to fight to make change in NY.

The Author

Paul is the founder of the NY Coalition For Open Government and has truly loved seeing it become what it is today and is excited about its future growth.

As an attorney for 32 years, he is a partner in the law firm of Berzer & Wolf. Prior to his private law practice, Paul served in several government positions with the Buffalo Common Council, Buffalo Housing Authority, and Erie County.

When he is not practicing law and doing open government stuff, Paul enjoys spending time with his spouse, Cheryl, and his three children, Michael, Joseph, and Julia. Paul resides in Amherst, NY, a suburb of Buffalo.

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