Appeals Court: Records Held by ‘Agents’ of Public Bodies Not Subject to FOIA

The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled in Bisio v. Clarkston (COA docket No. 335422) that if documents are held by “agents” for a public body, such as a city attorney, the “agent” is not him/herself considered a public body that can be compelled to release documents under the Freedom of Information Act.

The judges upheld a trial court ruling granting summary judgement to the city of Clarkson in the case where Susan Bisio had sought release of documents related to a development project.

The court, in upholding the trial court’s decision, stated that because the Legislature defined public bodies and that definition does not include ‘agent’ of a public body, though it does include officials and employees of the public body.

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