The Department of Corporation Counsel is located within the Bay County Executive's Office. Amber Davis-Johnson is responsible for all civil legal affairs of Bay County government and is the attorney appointed as Corporation Counsel. Heather Brady Pitcher is Assistant Corporation Counsel.
Under Bay County's Optional Form of County Government, the County Executive appoints the Bay County Corporation Counsel to perform all civil law functions and to provide property acquisition services for the County as provided by law. These duties include defending the County against all civil complaints and providing legal opinions.
The Department of Corporation Counsel also provides services required by Bay County officials and departments as they carry out the business of the county, such as contract renewal and preparation. Additionally, the department prepares, amends or repeals ordinances when requested by the Board of Commissioners. An attorney from the department will attend every Board meeting, committee meeting and any special meetings. Additionally, an attorney will also attend other board or committee meetings (e.g. Land Bank, Retirement Board, Veteran Affairs Committee) when requested by that particular board or official.
The Department of Corporation Counsel also serves as Risk Manager for Bay County, overseeing liability insurance coverage, risk prevention services, and claims management. Bay County is insured through the Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority (MMRMA).
The Department of Corporation Counsel represents the legal interests of Bay County government, but does not represent or provide legal advice to other municipalities, businesses or individuals.
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Coordination
In November 2019, the Bay County Board of Commissioners designated the Department of Corporation Counsel as FOIA Coordinator for Bay County. The department ensures that the various County departments are complying with Michigan’s FOIA law including determining whether the requested information should be exempt from disclosure.
Jayson Hoppe serves as FOIA Coordinator and Nicole LaDouce acts as FOIA Facilitator.
Please click here to learn more or to submit a FOIA request.
The Department of Corporation Counsel is not authorized to provide citizens with legal representation or advice for personal matters which are appropriately directed to private attorneys.
For legal assistance or to locate a lawyer, please click on one of the following resource links below:
State Bar of Michigan Lawyer Referral Service (800) 968-0738
Michigan Legal Help - Michigan Legal Help is for people who are handling their legal problems without a lawyer. It can help you learn about your legal problems and get ready for court. There are many Do-It-Yourself tools to help you create court forms. This website does not give legal advice, and it is not a substitute for having a lawyer.
Legal Services of Eastern Michigan - Since 1951 Legal Services of Eastern Michigan (LSEM) has delivered free civil legal assistance to persons living in poverty. Its mission is to use legal skills to address the causes and effects of poverty. Special emphasis is placed on those issues that affect the survival needs of low-income people.
Notary services, including the seal, are available in the Bay County Executive's Office. This is a free service. A Notary is witnessing a signature of a document and not verifying the accuracy of the document being signed. Please do not sign any documents prior to arriving at our office. If you are interested in becoming a Notary Public, please visit the County Clerk's Office on the First Floor of the Bay County Building.
Bay County Ordinances Online
You can now access the complete set of Bay County ordinances online through Municode.org by clicking here. There is no charge to use this service.