A news service for the people of Michigan from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy

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I'm Just a Bill

A sampling of proposed new state laws, as described on MichiganVotes.org

SENATE BILL 1503
(Give government subsidies to "artificial intelligence" businesses)
Introduced by state Sen. Valde Garcia, R-Howell

Authorize $18 million worth of government "21st Century Jobs Fund" subsidies for "creative artificial intelligence excellence sectors," defined as private businesses or other entities engaged in developing "advanced artificial neural network technology that is capable of autonomously generating new and potentially valuable concepts or strategies."

HOUSE BILL 6551
(Authorize state gas purchase stipend for all residents)
Introduced by state Rep. Kenneth Horn, R-Frankenmuth

Authorize a refundable income tax credit worth $150 for a single filer ($300 for a joint filer) for the purchase of gasoline. Essentially, the bill authorizes a state stipend to residents who buy gasoline.

HOUSE BILL 6191
(Authorize Wayne County "homeless trust fund" tax)
Introduced by state Rep. Robert Jones, D-Kalamazoo

Authorize the levy by Wayne County of 25 cents per $500 in value "deed tax" on property transfers to pay for a "homeless trust fund."

HOUSE BILL 5966
(Increase juvenile justice employee pension benefits)
Introduced by state Rep. Paul Opsommer, R-Dewitt

Include Department of Human Services juvenile justice employees in the same Department of Corrections "covered" positions category as prison guards, which makes them eligible for a supplemental pension at age 51 with 25 years on the job or at age 56 with 10 years. At age 62, these employees begin to receive a straight life pension like those of other state employees. See also the Fiscal Year 2007-2008 budget, which transfers some justice services to private social service agencies, with some state juvenile justice employees laid off.

SENATE BILL 1138
(Require headlights on all the time)
Introduced by state Sen. Michael Prusi, D-Ishpeming

Would require the use of vehicle headlights at all times when driving.

HOUSE BILL 6335
(Transfer transportation revenue to other spending)
Introduced by state Rep. Lee Gonzales, D-Flint

Authorize the transfer of $13 million of drivers' license fee money, which under current law must be used for economic development-related transportation infrastructure projects, to instead be used for other non-transportation state spending.

SENATE BILL 892
(Mandate driver's ed recycling message)
Introduced by state Sen. Cameron Brown, R-Fawn River Twp.

Mandate that driver's education courses include state-approved material expressing a belief in "the importance of recycling" and containing information on "opportunities to support statewide recycling efforts," as well as an anti-litter message.

SENATE BILL 1437 
(Regulate flag pole construction)

Introduced by state Sen. Gilda Jacobs, D-Huntington Woods

Extend state regulations on public playground equipment to include flagpoles, and require public flagpoles to be made of aluminum or a material that is considered by the industry to be high strength and lightweight material. The bill is introduced following the recent death of a child when a flag pole fell on her in a wind storm.

HOUSE BILL 6524
(Grant Detroit Auto Show subsidy)
Introduced by state Rep. Barbara Farrah, D-Southgate

Grants a subsidy in the form of a $200,000 Michigan Business Tax credit to the organizers of the Detroit Auto Show.

To comment on these bills, please see www.mackinac.org/9955.

In this premiere episode of EconPop, Andrew discusses the economics of Academy Award winner Dallas Buyers Club. Subjects include public health and safety regulations, crony capitalism and the role of regulatory capture, the emergence of black and grey markets, and commercial exchange as a means for increased social tolerance.

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