[nfbmi-talk] Fw: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners

joe harcz Comcast joeharcz at comcast.net
Fri Feb 10 11:21:40 CST 2012


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Farmer, Mel (LARA)" <farmerm at michigan.gov>
To: "'joe harcz Comcast'" <joeharcz at comcast.net>
Cc: "'Larry Posont'" <president.nfb.mi at gmail.com>; "Warren, Tom (AG)" 
<WarrenT at michigan.gov>; "Cannon, Patrick (LARA)" <cannonp at michigan.gov>; 
"Haynes, Carla (LARA)" <haynesc at michigan.gov>; "Brown, Melanie (LARA)" 
<BrownM45 at michigan.gov>
Sent: Friday, February 10, 2012 12:03 PM
Subject: FW: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners


Mr. Harcz, the attached is the Department's February 1, 2012 response to the 
January 23, 2012 request by Mr. Larry Posont on your behalf for copies of 
existing nonexempt records information from this Department/MCB. If you wish 
to receive the records described in Mr. Posont's request, please email or 
contact me at (517)373-0194 to make payment arrangements regarding the 
Department's estimated assessed FOIA processing costs of $533.38.

-----Original Message-----
From: Farmer, Mel (LARA)
Sent: Wednesday, February 01, 2012 12:41 PM
To: 'Larry Posont'
Cc: Cannon, Patrick (LARA); Haynes, Carla (LARA); Arwood, Steve (LARA); 
Brown, Melanie (LARA); Warren, Tom (AG)
Subject: FW: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners



This notice is in response to your January 23, 2012 email to Ms. Carla 
Haynes, Michigan Commission for the Blind (MCB), requesting that the MCB 
send Mr. Joe Harcz copies of existing, nonexempt public records you describe 
as:

"...all letters, evaluations, and Meeting Minutes that were between the 
Michigan Commission for the Blind, specifically, but not exclusively from 
Director Cannon,, and the Michigan Commission for the Blind Board of 
Commissioners from December 8, 2011 to the present."

This request is being processed under the state's Freedom of Information Act 
(FOIA), MCL 15.231 et seq.

Pursuant to MCL 15.235, Section 5(2)(a) of the FOIA, your request is granted 
as to existing, nonexempt public records possessed by the Department/MCB 
falling within the scope of the request. However, MCL 15.234, Section 4(1) 
of the FOIA provides that a public body may charge a fee for public records 
search, examination, review, and the deletion and separation of exempt from 
nonexempt information. The Department/MCB has estimated that to comply with 
your request, nearly all MCB staff (+85) would have to be drawn away from 
their respective duties and assignments for an aggregate estimate of 21.25 
hours (15 minutes per employee x 85 employees) to search, locate, and 
retrieve records to determine whether the Department/MCB possesses records 
responsive to your request. Further, such records would have to be examined 
and reviewed for separation/redaction of information statutorily exempt from 
public disclosure. For the aforementioned reasons, the Department, pursuant 
to MCL 15.234, Section 4(3) of the FOIA, has determined that failure to 
charge a fee, in this particular instance, will result in unreasonably high 
costs to the Department/MCB.

The estimated costs to process this request is $533.38. This estimate is 
based on the hourly wage ($25.10), including benefits, of the Department's 
lowest paid employee capable of the necessary tasks to comply with the 
request (General Office Assistant 5 level employee), even though the average 
hourly wage and benefits of MCB staff exceeds $25.10. The estimated labor 
cost to process this particular request is calculated at $25.10/hour x 21.25 
hours = $533.38.

In order to continue processing this request, the Department/MCB, per MCL 
15.234, Section 4(2) of the FOIA, requires a good faith deposit of $266.69, 
or the full amount, be made payable and mailed to:

   STATE OF MICHIGAN
   Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
   Office Services Mailroom
   7150 Harris Drive, P.O. Box 30015
   Lansing, MI 48909

After the receipt of payment and completing the processing of your request, 
the Department will notify you of any balance due it, or owed to you; inform 
you of any statutory basis for any exemptions from disclosure of any 
records/information; inform you of any remedial rights; and upon receipt of 
full payment, forward requested, existing, nonexempt public 
records/information to Mr. Joseph Harcz.

For your information, the Department/MCB has received the following requests 
from Mr. Joseph Harcz within the last few months that require labor time for 
record searches and fee processing charges (excluding any charges for 
accessible formatting):
Request Date Response Date Records Requested         Estimated Time/Costs
Oct/11/11    Oct/18/11     MCB meeting records       30 min/No Charge
Oct/19/11    Nov/3/11      RSA monitoring response   20 min/No Charge
Dec/16/11    Jan/13/12     ListServ Postings         20 min/No charge
Dec/23/11    Jan/17/12     Cannon evaluation/other   20 min/No charge
Dec/27/11    Jan/10/12     Peckham cash match        20/min/No charge
Dec/27/11    Jan/20/12     New Horizon emails        19 hrs/$476.90
Dec/27/11    Jan/13/12     Draft MCB minutes         45 min/No Charge
Dec/29/11    Jan/6/12      Oakland cash match        20 min/No Charge
Jan/1/12     Jan/25/12     MCB/New Horizons           8 hrs/$180.80
Jan/3/12     Jan/27/12     Peckham records            6 hrs/$150.60
Jan/3/12     Jan/25/12     ARRA/New Horizons funding  8 hrs/$180.80
Jan/5/12     Jan/12/12     Payments to Wolverine     12 hrs/$301.20
Jan/6/12     Jan/17/12     Jerry McVety payments     30 min/No Charge
Jan/6/12     Jan/20/12     Eagle Media Payments       4 hrs/$100.40
Jan/6/12     Jan/27/12     New Horizons records       6 hrs/$150.60
Jan/6/12     Jan/27/12     New Horizons/finance info 15 min/No Charge
Jan/6/12     Jan/  /12     Gales Hardware Payments    9 hrs/$225.00
Jan/7/12     Jan/17/12     P.Cannon/12/4/08 letter   15 min/No Charge
Jan/7/12     Jan/20/12     G. McNeal Authorization   19 hrs/$476.90
Jan/8/12     Jan/17/12     Payments to Peckham        6 hrs/$150.60
Jan/8/12     Jan/20/12     Draft minutes/recording   25 min/No Charge
Jan/10/12    Jan/12/12     LARA/union agreements     30 min/No Charge
Jan/11/12    Jan/25/12     MCB activities             7 hrs/$175.70
Jan/15/12    Jan/24/12     EOC minutes               20 min/No Charge
Jan/18/12    Jan/31/12     MCB FY2011 budget         45 min/No Charge
Jan/23/12    Feb/  /12     D. Thomas ADA Coord.      15 min/No Charge


As illustrated above, the Department spends, or will have to, expend 
considerable time and labor costs in addressing multiple searches for 
records/information requested by Mr. Harcz. To date, Mr. Harcz has not paid 
any of the above assessed costs allowed under the state's FOIA and/or 
federal FOIA regulations.

Sincerely,

Melvin Farmer, Jr.

CC; Patrick Cannon, Carla Haynes





-----Original Message-----
From: Larry Posont [mailto:president.nfb.mi at gmail.com]
Sent: Monday, January 23, 2012 1:52 PM
To: Haynes, Carla (LARA)
Cc: president.nfb.mi at gmail.com; jcscot at sbcglobal.net; laschuck at juno.com; 
Cannon, Patrick (LARA); Luzenski, Sue (LARA)
Subject: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners

20812 Ann Arbor Trail
Dearborn Heights, MI 48127

January 23, 2012

Carla Miller, Haynes
FOIA Coordinator
Michigan Commission for the Blind
Victor Office Center
201 N. Washington Square, Second Floor
Lansing, MI  48913

Dear Ms. Haynes:

On behalf of Mr. Joe Harcz, I am requesting that you send him all
letters, evaluations, and Meeting Minutes that were sent between the
Michigan Commission for the Blind, specifically, but not exclusively
from Director Cannon,, and the Michigan Commission for the Blind Board
of Commissioners from December 8 to the present.  I was directed to do
this by the Assistant to the Attorney General, Mr. Tom Warren. I have
enclosed his letter, Mr Harcz's letter, and my letter to the Attorney
General requesting clarification below this letter.

Sincerely,
Larry Posont, Commission for the Blind Board Member
 The primary goal of The Commission for the Blind is the
gainful employment of Michigan's blind citizens. This is my primary
goal as a Commissioner.

(313) 271-3058
Email: president.nfb.mi at gmail.com

 (313) 271-3058
Email: president.nfb.mi at gmail.com


----- Original Message -----
From: joe harcz Comcast
To: Larry Posont MCB Comm.
Cc: John Scott MCB Comm. ; lydia Schuck MCB Comm. ; nfbmi-talk at nfbnet.org
Sent: Thursday, January 12, 2012 1:05 PM
Subject: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners


January 12, 2011

Paul Joseph Harcz, Jr.
joeharcz at comcast.net

Re: Meeting Information and More


Dear Commissioners.

As you are public officials and as the Director of the Michigan
Commission for the Blind has been so violated of the ADA, 504, the
Open Meetings Act and the Michigan Freedom of Information Act I am
formally requesting any and all information sent to you since
December 8, 2011 to the present.

All that I request in these regards is that you forward all
correspondences including draft meeting minutes, evaluations, letters
sent in those regards, etc. to my e-mail adress listed here.

Sincerely,

Paul Joseph Harcz, Jr.

cc: NFB MI

  FOIA mcl-Act-442-of-1976 (2).pdf

----- Original Message -----
From: "Warren, Tom (AG)" <WarrenT at michigan.gov>
To: "'Larry Posont'" <president.nfb.mi at gmail.com>
Cc: <jcscott at sbcglobal.net>; <laschuck at juno.com>
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2012 9:47 AM
Subject: RE: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners


Good morning Commissioner Posont.

You asked whether you should produce certain documents Mr. Harcz
electronically requested under the Michigan Freedom of Information
Act (FOIA), MCL 15.231 et seq.  You are correct in acknowledging that
responding to this request may "cause difficulty," especially
where FOIA outlines specific procedures that need to be followed
before a "public body" may produce documents and restricts
production of certain documents.  For the other board members' and
your future use, I have attached a copy of this statute.

FOIA requires that a "public body," i.e., a state agency shall
designate a person as the public body's FOIA coordinator, and the
FOIA coordinator is responsible for accepting, processing, and
approving or denying requests.  MCL 15.236(1).  Here, the Licensing
and Regulatory Affairs Department (LARA) appointed Mel Farmer, its
coordinator.  In turn, Carla Haynes has been appointed the
Michigan Commission for the Blind's (MCB) coordinator who works in
regards to FOIA under Mr. Farmer's oversight.  If you have not
done so already, you should forward Mr. Harcz's January 12, 2012
e-mail to the MCB's FOIA coordinator for response.  You are
certainly free to communicate to Mr. Harcz that you have sent his
request to the FOIA coordinator for response.

You write that "He (Harcz) has repeatedly asked Director Cannon for
this information, but it has not been sent."  I do not have
personal knowledge of any failure to answer FOIA requests that have
been made concerning this matter.  If a public body fails to
respond to a proper request, FOIA describes the remedies that may be
available to the requesting party in the circuit court.


Thomas D. Warren
Assistant Attorney General
Labor Division
(517) 373-2560


This e-mail message and any attachments may contain privileged or
confidential information that is protected against use or
disclosure.  If you have received this in error, please reply
immediately.  Any transmission to persons other than the intended
recipient shall not constitute a waiver of any applicable privileges.
Any unauthorized use, disclosure, copying or dissemination is
strictly prohibited.

-----Original Message-----
From: Larry Posont [mailto:president.nfb.mi at gmail.com]
Sent: Thursday, January 12, 2012 9:38 PM
To: Warren, Tom (AG); president.nfb.mi at gmail.com;
jcscot at sbcglobal.net; laschuck at juno.com; joeharcz at comcast.net; Arwood,
Steve
(LARA)
Subject: foia ada 504 oma request to commissioners

20812 Ann Arbor Trail
Dearborn Heights, MI 48127

January 12, 2012

Michigan Department of Attorney General
Lansing Office
G. Mennen illiams Building, 7th Floor
525 W. Ottawa St.
P.O. Box 30212
Lansing, MI 48909

Dear Mr. Warren:

   I have been requested by Mr. Joe Harcz to send all Commission
Correspondence that has been sent between the Commission Board
members and Director Cannon since December 8, to the present, to him
under Freedom of Information. I am including his letter, sent
to the board members below mine. He has repeatedly asked Director
Cannon for this information, but it has not been sent. Please
advise me immediately about whether I should send all of this
information. I do not want to start a precedent that will cause
difficulty for future Board members.
   Mr. Cannon is being paid to do this, but is not carrying out this
responsibility. The Commission Board consists of volunteers.
This brings me to the other urgent question that causes me to seek
your immediate advice. Compiling all of the documentation sent
between a Commission Board, and the Director to send out to consumers
should be done by a separate Secretary that is employed by and
for the Commission Board, but does not work for the Commission for the
Blind as an agency. Under public law, the Commission Board is
supposed to have a separate Secretary to handle Minutes,
correspondence, Agendas, and other clerical duties. Since we do not
have
this Secretary, and the Director is not fulfilling his
responsibilities to send out information in a timely manner, what
recourse
and responsibility do we have as Commission Board members. Thank you
for your immediate response to these vitally important matters.

Sincerely,

Larry Posont, Commission for the Blind Board Member
                 The primary goal of the Commission for the Blind is
the gainful employment of Michigan's blind citizens. This is
my primary goal as a Commissioner. 





More information about the nfbmi-talk mailing list