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Askins v. DDA

Askins v. Ann Arbor DDA
The former editor of the online publication The Ann Arbor Chronicle sued the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority (DDA) alleging that the DDA had violated the Open Meetings Act, the Freedom of Information Act, and the Michigan Downtown Development Authorities Act. Mr. Askins represented himself while the DDA had a very experienced lawyer defend it. The Court has held a few hearings and the parties have submitted various pleadings and briefs. When faced with the prospect of having the DDA file a motion for summary disposition, Askins hired an attorney. The parties soon reached an agreement and offer the Court a stipulated order. Essentially, the DDA admitted violating the statutes and Askins surrendered any claim to dmages, costs or attorney fees.Click here to see the Stipulated Order

The Stipulated Order identifies four violations of state law. One issue not presented to the Court was whether the DDA is in compliance with the Michigan DDA Act's requirement that it maintain a development plan. There is reason to believe that the Ann Arbor DDA's development plan does not meet the requirements of the state law. This is likely to be the next piece of litigation challenging the leadership at the DDA.

In April 2015, the Court issued an opinion that identified some of the DDA's violations of law while seeking further proof of other allegations. Click here to see the Court's April 2, 2015 decision. has had a couple of articles about the Askins law suit.
Oddly, neither article has any statement by Dave Askins, the successful Plaintiff. One might think that a complete report regarding litigation would include something from the successful party.