Senate Bill 716, Require legislative authorization for road repair borrowing: Passed 22 to 16 in the Senate

To prohibit a state transportation commission from borrowing more than $100 million in any fiscal year without first giving the legislature at least 30 days' notice. The bill would empower the legislature to halt the borrowing with a majority vote in the House and Senate. If this bill were passed and signed by the Governor (unlikely), it would likely lead to suspension of $3.5 billion in road repair debt that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ordered the commission to approve, which it did on Jan. 30, 2020.

Related, the Senate also passed on a voice-vote a non-binding resolution declaring that it would not vote to appropriate money to pay the increased debt service on that new road borrowing. The resolution has no effect, but a future vote to deny appropriations to repay already-borrowed money could potentially trigger a state government showdown and fiscal crisis.

35 Sen. Curt VanderWall R - Ludington Y

House Bill 5053, Authorize "clawbacks" to enforce state vendor contracts: Passed 106 to 0 in the House

To authorize “clawbacks” (repayments) from state vendors who breach their contract with the state, and require agencies to use this method to enforce contracts.

100 Rep. Scott VanSingel R - Newaygo County Y

House Bill 5333, Revise allowable use of money in state forest development fund: Passed 106 to 0 in the House

To revise the allowable uses of money collected in a state forest development fund. The bill would explicitly prohibit this money from being used to cover administrative expenses at the state Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, or to make "payments in lieu of taxes" to local governments with large amounts of (tax exempt) state property in their jurisdiction. It would allow this money to be used for forest management expenses including those related to state timber sales.

100 Rep. Scott VanSingel R - Newaygo County Y

House Bill 5479, Ban government gun "buybacks": Passed 58 to 49 in the House

To prohibit local governments from using any public resources for firearm purchase (“buyback”) programs. Governments could only buy guns from licensed dealers for law enforcement purposes.

100 Rep. Scott VanSingel R - Newaygo County Y

SOURCE: MichiganVotes.org, a free, non-partisan website created by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, providing concise, non-partisan, plain-English descriptions of every bill and vote in the Michigan House and Senate. Please visit www.MichiganVotes.org.

Permission to reprint this legislative summary in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided that www.MichiganVotes.org is properly cited.

Y = Yes, N = No, X = Not Voting