Increase Cell Phone Tax, Expand Stopped Vehicle Mandate, Car Seat Regulations, More

December 8, 2017 MichiganVotes weekly roll call report

Senate Bill 544, Create framework for 'enhanced education savings accounts': Passed 23 to 14 in the Senate

To create an enhanced education savings accounts program that would allow individuals to make tax-deductible contributions to an account used to pay for public school extracurricular activities, vocational programs or other services that schools are not required to provide. Note that while the Senate passed this and some related bills, it did not pass a bill authorizing the tax deductions (Senate Bill 549), without which this and the other bills in the package appear to be moot.

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Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


Senate Bill 400, Increase tax imposed to pay for 9-1-1 phone services: Passed 30 to 6 in the Senate

To increase phone service levies and cell phone taxes imposed to pay for local 9-1-1 emergency phone service. The tax on cell phone contracts would rise from 1.92 percent to 4.19 percent, with a monthly user fee (tax) rising from 19 cents to 25 cents.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


Senate Bill 477, Expand requirement to slow for emergency or service vehicles on roadside: Passed 36 to 0 in the Senate

To expand a law that requires drivers to move over or "reduce and maintain a safe speed" when passing police or emergency vehicles on the side of the road so this is also required for tow trucks, garbage trucks, surveyors, road maintenance and utility vehicles. The bill would define “reduce speed” as slowing down by at least 10 miles an hour.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


Senate Bill 501, Revise liquor store territory rationing: Passed 27 to 9 in the Senate

To prohibit giving a new package liquor store license to a store that would be within half a mile of an existing seller, with a number of specific exceptions.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


Senate Bill 686, Require disclosure of municipal employee retirement benefit underfunding: Passed 36 to 0 in the Senate

To establish a new state disclosure and oversight regime for pensions and other post-retirement benefits (OPEBs) offered by local governments to their employees, including retiree health insurance benefits. Local governments would have file annual reports on the extent to which the future benefits they have promised are underfunded, using standards the state Department of Treasury would be required to establish. Locals that fail to meet certain funding levels, or that spend more than 12 percent of their budget to prefund benefits (or catch up on past underfunding) would be required to submit a corrective action plan. Provisions authorizing “emergency manager”-type receivership provisions for local governments that fail to meet the standards by specified deadlines were not included in the final version of the bill.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


House Bill 5298, Require disclosure of municipal employee retirement benefit underfunding: Passed 105 to 5 in the House

This is the same bill as Senate Bill 686 described above.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


House Bill 4951, Revise child car seat rules: Passed 94 to 16 in the House

To revise child car seat regulations so they are based on height and weight, not just age. Children under age 2 who weigh 30 pounds or less would have to be in a rear-facing child seat; and children age 2 through 4, or who weigh between 30 and 50 pounds, would have to be a forward-facing child seat. Children between age 5 through 7 would have to be in a booster seat, as would children who weigh between 30 and 50 pounds and are less than 57 inches tall.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


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.


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