This week and review Michigan Radio’s Weekend Edition host Rina Miller and political analyst Jack Lessenberry discuss proposed bills to end lame duck sessions and make it easier to file freedom of information act requests. They also chat about the controversial right to work Pure Michigan ad that appeared in the Wall Street Journal.
Lessenberry doesn’t think the lame duck bill will pass. He says that bill was a reaction to the momentous lame duck session at the end of 2012 that resulted in passing right to work legislation.
“There is always going to be a need for a lame duck session and people will let off a little steam about this but no one is going to pass a bill saying you can’t have one,” Lessenberry says.
But Lessenberry isn’t sure whether the freedom of information act bill will pass or not. He says the goal of that bill is to keep costs down when filing a FOIA request.
“Under the freedom of information act government agencies are supposed to give any member of the public, not just journalists, any document within five business days or explain why not,” Lessenberry says. “But some government agencies have begun charging what some people are exorbitant costs and they want to put a limit on this.”
Also this week, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation paid $144,000 for a pull page ad in the Wall Street Journal touting Michigan’s new right to work law as “Pure Michigan.”
Lessenberry says it wasn’t a very good move by the MEDC.
“It is being seen by a lot of people as unnecessarily further enflaming things and making democrats and labor movements even more mad,” he says.