LANSING—Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey, R-Clarklake, issued the following statement expressing concerns about changes made to the Open Meetings Act (OMA) via Executive Order 2020-15:
“The Senate Republican Caucus is deeply concerned about Executive Order 2020-15 to alter requirements under the Open Meetings Act. We believe this order may limit the public’s ability to participate in the democratic process.
We call upon our Governor to provide greater guidance to ensure elected bodies do not hinder public input by choosing to conduct business via technology that may be inaccessible for some citizens. Older Michiganders are most at risk during these times. They are also the least likely to have the technology necessary to access public meetings electronically. In a time of crisis, citizens should have more access to their elected officials, not less.
We are concerned this order from our Governor may place unanticipated restrictions on an individual’s ability to redress their government. We are willing to work with our Governor to improve the order to ensure elected bodies do not inadvertently limit public input. Now, more than ever, we must work together to defend the fundamental elements of our democracy while at the same time doing what we can to protect public health,” said Shirkey.