Meijer Files Suit In Acme

May 12, 2005
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ACME — The Village of Grand Traverse and Meijer Inc. have filed a new lawsuit against Acme Township alleging violations of the Open Meetings and Freedom of Information acts.

Filed in 13th Circuit Court, the suit contends the township board illegally met in closed session March 1 and then refused to provide copies of meeting minutes after a FOIA request made by attorneys for the village and Meijer.

The suit alleges only four trustees agreed by a voice vote to enter into closed session; state law requires roll call approval from two-thirds of the entire board.

Clerk Dorothy Dunville told the Traverse City Record-Eagle that a fifth trustee arrived late and participated in the closed session discussion, but had not cast the necessary vote to allow the session to occur.

"I am not conceding anything," Supervisor Bill Kurtz told the Record-Eagle on whether the board violated state law.

Dunville said on the advice of Traverse City attorney Christopher Bzdok, the board "re-enacted" the meeting and closed session two days later.

Bzdok said the failure to have enough votes to go into the initial closed session was a "hyper-technicality" remedied with the "re-enactment," a corrective move he said is allowed under state statute.

Bzdok said the sessions were used to discuss another pending case with the village and Meijer. That lawsuit alleges some trustees have conflicts of interest and should not decide on the proposed development on M-72 near Lautner Road.    

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