The basic intent of the Michigan Open Meetings Act is to require public bodies to conduct business at open meetings. The Act applies to any local governing body (including a board, commission, committee, subcommittee, or authority). The Act sets forth regulations for public meetings that include notification, public participation, rules for holding closed meetings, and the legal requirements for meeting minutes. All members of public bodies should carefully consider the requirements of the OMA. If there is doubt as to whether a certain course of action might violate the OMA, the public body’s attorney should be consulted for advice and guidance before any action is taken. There are civil and criminal penalties for intentionally violating the OMA.