Michigan State University

Lawmakers look to force transparency requirements on Detroit Institute of Arts

Jon Harrison
Blog: 

A pair of state House representatives from Macomb and Oakland counties on Thursday announced plans to draft legislation that would subject the Detroit Institute of Arts to transparency requirement that apply to government entities under the Freedom of Information and Open Meetings acts.

DIA officials in response said agreements made earlier this year already put new transparency measures in place, arguing new legislation isn't necessary.

Voters in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties approved a millage in 2012 that raises $23 million a year in taxpayer money for the museum.

And in 2014, the state pledged $194.8 million in tobacco settlement money to protect Detroit-owned art at the DIA from being sold in bankruptcy case.

But the DIA remains a private, non-profit organization run by a volunteer board of directors, and their meetings are not open to the public.

And hefty pay raises being proposed for some of the museum's top executives have drawn the ire of some elected leaders who are calling for new transparency measures.

For the full article, see Khalil AlHajal, "Lawmakers look to force transparency requirements on Detroit Institute of Arts", MLive, August 27, 2015.

For another see Jennifer Chambers, "Mich. lawmakers seek more transparency from DIA", Detroit News, August 28, 2015.

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