[nfbmi-talk] yet another foia request

joe harcz Comcast joeharcz at comcast.net
Wed Apr 28 02:52:00 UTC 2010

Re: FOIA Request June 20, 2008 Recording MCB Quarterly Meeting

April 27, 2010


Paul Joseph Harcz, Jr.

1365 E. Mt. Morris Rd.

Mt. Morris, MI  48458

E-mail: joeharcz at comcast.net


Melvin Farmer, DELEG, FOIA Coordinator

E-mail: farmerc at michigan.gov


Carla Haynes, MCB, FOIA

E-mail: haynesc at michigan.gov


Dear Mr. Farmer and Ms. Haynes:


I am writing you today to request the audio recording of the June 20, 2008 meeting of the Michigan Commission for the Blind pursuant to the Michigan Freedom of Information Act referenced in this quotation:


“         Mike Ellis advised Commissioners that there had not been audio streaming because there was equipment failure.  The Commission will have audio that

has been captured.”



I am requesting this without any fee pursuant to past actions and identification on either a flashcard or CD (the latter of which has been sent to me in the past and is satisfactory).


It may simply be mailed as in the past to my e-mail address listed above.


I do wonder aloud here about one thing however: Why aren’t these recordings simply archived on MCB’s web site which certainly would be in the public interest? I am puzzled by this as also in this same meeting minutes in the discussion of the MCB Action plan this was referenced directly. I quote from the minutes here on the matter:


“3.4    Enhance the MCB website including adding audio files of agency brochures, videos and archived quarterly Commission meetings.

Status:       Future meetings will be archived when the space becomes available through DMB. Three of MCB's brochures are currently available on line.”


I certainly would consider it to be compliant with this request if MCB simply would put these archived recordings in accessible manner on their own web site as suggested over and over again including the above reference which is almost two years old.


It appears that we have some issues with timely delivery and availability of public information. The state web sites could well be used to deliver timely, material like this in the spirit of transparency, open governance and accountability. Governor Grandholm has often discussed transparency including efforts in that regard recently on her web site. I would appreciate it if DELEG and MCB also was more forthcoming and acted more affirmatively in these regards. It certainly would, among other things ensure that I, and others would not be so burdened with making FOIA requests. And, for that matter you and the staff at DELEG would likewise not have to be so burdened with these issues as well.


I offer the latter observations in the spirit of cooperation and positive input from a citizen of this state who just happens to be blind.


Very Truly Yours,


Paul Joseph Harcz, Jr.


Cc: Commissioners Michigan Commission for the Blind

Cc: National Federation of the Blind of Michigan

Cc: Michigan Council of the Blind and Visually Impaired

Cc: Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services, Inc.

Cc: Michael Cox, Michigan Attorney General






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