Raisin Township officials violated information laws, court declares


Judge Anna Marie Anzalone ruled January 25 that Raisin Township violated the Open Meetings Act and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by not including a statement of the purpose of a special meeting on March 7, 2014. She also ruled the township delayed providing the clerk’s handwritten notes from a meeting, and delayed providing pages of information involving military surplus equipment.

Attorneys were also ordered to submit briefs on the issue of the township paying attorney fees for Raisin Township resident Paul Smoke. While township leaders dealt with controversy within the board, Smoke sued on the complaint that alleged special board meetings were not properly posted, nor did the township officials fully comply with FOIA requests.

Action to purchase a fire truck during the March 7, 2014 meeting was corrected by calling a special meeting 10 days later so officials could vote again.

Michael Colasanti, Smoke’s lawyer, requested a court order that the township follow the acts in the future, but Anzalone denied his request on the basis the township is already required to do this by law.

Township attorney Heidi Hudson stated the township clerk believed she had thrown away her handwritten notes after her draft minutes were approved by the board, and an effort was made to turn all military surplus equipment documents over to Smoke.

A hearing on the attorney fee issue will most likely be scheduled early this spring.


Tecumseh Herald


110 E. Logan St.
P.O. Box 218
Tecumseh, MI 49286

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