Are emails between Gov. Snyder, Detroit EM Orr illegal?

Emails exchanged before Detroit EM Kevyn Orr's hiring show governor, his people were reaching out to Orr well before financial emergency declared


DETROIT – The emails are there in black and white between Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr and Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, as well as Snyder's top appointee, Richard Baird.

They met and discussed the emergency manager position before Orr's hiring and, according to union activist Robert Davis, that is a violation of state's Open Meetings Act.

But according to Orr spokesman Bill Nowling, Davis' claim is ludicrous.

"It is ludicrous to think that we could hire an experienced professional capable of doing the job of restructuring Detroit without talking to them first," Nowling said. "We followed the law and the Emergency Loan Board did its public deliberation. These discussions are no different."

A top-drawer municipal law attorney tells Local 4 that Davis' argument that the governor and his people seeking out and meeting with candidates for the Detroit emergency manager job is against the law is not only ludicrous, it's baloney.

Here's what's not baloney: Since Davis filed his lawsuit he has been asking for records under subpoena and, so far, not all of the records that exist have been produced -- especially from State Treasurer Andy Dillon's office.

"They turned over one email from Andy Dillon and per the documents received from Mr. Baird -- from the subpoenaed documents that we received from Richard Baird -- clearly indicates that Mr. Dillon was involved in nearly hundreds of communications between Mr. Baird, the governor as well as Mr. Orr himself," said Davis.

The Ingham County judge dealing with this case made it clear in court on Wednesday that the state had better step up and produce what's there or there will be real problems.

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