Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority (Authority) Written Public Summary of the Authority's Freedom of Information Act Procedures and Guidelines

Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority (Authority) Written Public Summary of the Authority's Freedom of Information Act Procedures and Guidelines

A. How to submit written requests.

FOIA requests to the Authority can be sent by email or mail to:

Email: MLBFOIA@michigan.gov

By Private Courier:
Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority
Attn. FOIA Coordinator
300 North Washington Square
Lansing, MI 48913

By Regular US Mail:
Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority
Attn. FOIA Coordinator
PO Box 30766
Lansing, MI 48909

Requests should include a name, phone number, and mailing address.

B. How to understand the Authority's written responses to FOIA requests.

The Authority has several options when responding to written requests for public records. It can grant the FOIA request, deny the request, grant it in part and deny it in part, or take one 10 business day extension. After 10 business days pass, the Authority has to respond with one of the other options.

If the request is granted or granted in part and denied in part, the Authority can also charge a fee to process the request. There is no fee for requests that do not require the Authority to incur costs above the threshold set in its Procedures and Guidelines. Fees are calculated using its procedures and guidelines and you will receive a detailed itemization of the fee. The Authority may require you to pay a good-faith deposit before it processes your request. After you pay any deposit and final balance due, the Authority will produce records in its possession that fall within the scope of your request and that legally may be disclosed to the public. The Authority may also notify you that some of the records you have requested are available on its website.

If the request is denied, the Authority will inform you of the basis for its denial in a written notice. Reasons the Authority may deny a request include:

  1. You did not describe the records you have requested well enough and the Authority cannot determine what you are asking for;
  2. The Authority has determined that it does not have records that respond to your request in its possession; or
  3. The records you have requested are exempt from public disclosure.

If all or part of your request is denied, the Authority will inform you of your right to appeal its denial to the head of the Authority and/or to file a lawsuit against the Authority in its written response.

C. Deposit requirements.

If the Authority estimates a fee to process a FOIA request greater than $50.00, the Authority will require a good-faith deposit from you before providing the public records. The deposit shall not exceed 1/2 of the total estimated fee. Any written notice containing a notice of a deposit shall also contain a best efforts estimate by the Authority regarding the time frame after a deposit is received that it will take the Department to provide the public records. The time frame estimate is not binding upon the Authority, but the Authority shall provide the estimate in good faith and strive to be reasonably accurate and to provide the public records in a manner based on this State's public policy under section 1 of the FOIA, MCL 15.231, and the nature of the request in the particular instance.

D. Fee calculations.

The FOIA permits the Authority to charge a fee to process FOIA requests using a form to give you a detailed itemization of the costs involved. The Authority may charge for the following costs:

  1. the costs of labor for the search, location, and examination of public records;
  2. the costs of labor for the review of public records and separation and deletion of exempt from nonexempt material;
  3. the cost of nonpaper physical media;
  4. the cost of duplication and publication of public records;
  5. the costs of labor for the duplication or publication of public records;
  6. the actual cost of mailing public records.

E. Avenues for challenge and appeal.

If the Authority charges a fee or denies all or part of a request, you may submit to the head of the Authority a written appeal that specifically states the word "appeal" and identifies the basis for which the fee should be reduced or the disclosure determination should be reversed. Written appeals may be sent to the email address or mailing address listed above and will be forwarded to the Authority or the person designated by the Authority to respond to written appeals.