The Open Meetings Act and Freedom of Information Act were designed to codify ways the public can gather information and provide guidelines for organizations in granting that access. But as with many well-intentioned ideas, applying those laws has fallen far short of their spirit.

Exceptions, exemptions, denials of requests, court challenges and legal opinions have only further muddied the waters until many community members feel almost powerless to access information on public schools.

And that kind of transparency, in theory but not in fact, only breeds suspicion and conspiracy theories.

We encourage all school districts to join the roughly 40 districts statewide who have begun posting their checkbook registers online as part of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy's "Show Michigan the Money" transparency project...

Midland Daily News

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