Freedom Of Information Act
Revised FOIA Response Procedure in light of Executive Order 2020-38
As a result of the Governor’s April 6, 2020 Executive Order (Order) No. 2020-38, Green Oak Charter Township (“Township”) will continue to fulfill Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the extent possible due to the circumstances arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic and subject to the procedures set forth in this notice, which are based on that Order.
Pursuant to the Governor’s Order, “strict compliance” with some FOIA response requirements has been temporarily suspended. The Township now has ten (10) business days to respond to a FOIA request or appeal received via mail, hand-delivery, or fax. That time period begins when a Township employee physically opens the envelope containing the request or appeal, or takes a faxed request or appeal from the fax machine, not the dates when requests are considered to be received under the FOIA. The Township will provide written notice to the requestor should compliance with any of the current COVID-19 emergency orders preclude the Township from providing a response within the new timeline.
Additionally, if the FOIA request requires “in-person efforts” to prepare the response, e.g. search, examination and copying of documents, then the Township may defer responding to that portion of the request until the expiration and/or any extension of the Order and will provide written notification to the requestor explaining the reasons for the deferral. If a requestor informs the Township in writing they want to revise their FOIA request to exclude the portions requiring “in-person efforts,” then the Township will respond to the request for records that would not require such efforts within the time frames set forth in MCL 15.235. Finally, the Township will continue to respond to all public records requests submitted and seeking records via email or website submission that do not require “in-person” efforts within the statute’s current guidelines set forth in MCL 15.235
The Township will follow the above procedures and adhere to the Governor’s Order through its effective date of June 4, 2020 and/or any extension of the Order’s duration.
FORM TO REQUEST A FOIA
Q: What is FOIA?
A: FOIA stands for Freedom of Information Act.
- FOIA establishes a citizen's legal right to access government records and information upon request.
- FOIA responses and information are freely available (within set guidelines) but they are not free to obtain; usually, you must pay for the costs of finding, processing, copying and mailing the requested material.
Q: How do I file a FOIA request?
A: File with the Township Clerk's office.
- FOIA requests for Green Oak Charter Township public records must be in writing and sent to the designated FOIA Coordinator:
- FOIA Coordinator
Green Oak Charter Township Clerks Office
10001 Silver Lake Rd.
Brighton, MI 48116
You may also make your request in person at the Clerks Office, or fax your request to the Clerk's office at 810-231-5080.
- FOIA requests for Green Oak Charter Township Police records should be sent to:
10001 Silver Lake Rd.
Brighton, MI 48116
You may also email your FOIA request to the following address :
Q: How long does it take to get records under FOIA?
A: Between 5 and 15 days on average.
- The statute allows 5 working-days for the Township to respond to a FOIA request.
- An extension of an additional 10 days is allowed under the statute, including if the request requires the township to search for, collect, examine, or review a voluminous amount of separate and distinct public records, or to collect the public records from numerous offices, facilities or establishments located apart from this office.
Q: What does it cost to get records pursuant to a FOIA request?
A: Costs vary depending on the quantity and complexity of the documents request.
- The Act allows the Township of Green Oak to charge for the labor of finding, compiling and reviewing the records.
- Charges are based not on the highest paid FOIA responder in the office, but on the lowest.
- If the charge is expected to exceed $50.00, a letter of notification is sent to the requestor asking for a deposit before proceeding with copying.
- Please note that Green Oak Charter Township only accepts Cash or Check for FOIA Release
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