Tuesday, June 13
I voted NO on HBs 4495 & 4496 (Reps. Snyder and Filler), which would remove many of the current provisions required of DHHS to seek waivers for cost sharing by beneficiaries enrolled in the Healthy Michigan Plan, and eliminate the trigger that would cease the program if costs to the state exceed the savings. EXPLANATION: Removing the trigger will take away all accountability to try and contain costs of the program and allow it to remain in perpetuity regardless of its cost or effectiveness.
HB 4495 PASSED: 80-27; HB 4496 PASSED: 83-24
Wednesday, June 14
I voted NO on SB 50 & HB 4457 (Sen. Santana and Rep. Scott), which would designate June 19 as “Juneteenth”. As well as, add June 19, also known as “Juneteenth” to a list of bank holidays by amending Public Act 124 of 1865. This list includes days that are to be considered “Sunday” under the law for the purposes of general banking and the holding of court. EXPLANATION: Although I am happy to see legislation commemorating the great work done by our first Republican President Abraham Lincoln, there are already enough holidays where our banks and government institutions are closed.
BOTH PASSED: 105-4
I voted NO on HBs 4616 & 4617 (Reps. Barbec and Hoskins), which would prohibit mental health professionals from engaging in conversion therapy with a minor. The legislation would also ban any practice or treatment by licensed mental health professionals that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity. EXPLANATION: We shouldn’t punish mental health professionals if they try to help a gender-confused child embrace and accept their biological body. Additionally, this law would make it illegal for mental health professionals to assist in de-transitioning of minors, even if the minor sought out this help.
BOTH PASSED: 56-53
I voted NO on HB 4159 (Rep. Brixie), which would designate the black swallowtail butterfly as the official butterfly of the state of Michigan. EXPLANATION: There are so many issues plaguing this state right now and the fact that the Legislature is spending time debating if we should have a state butterfly is a waste of taxpayer dollars.
I voted NO on HBs 4695 & 4696 (Rep. Tsenoglou), which would ultimately implement nine days of early voting and allow for municipal and county agreements on early voting sites and provide penalties for the crimes created in HB 4695. I voted NO on HB 4697 (Rep. Koleszar), which would require that secure ballot drop boxes be located in cities and townships, specifically one box for every 15,000 voters within that municipality. I voted NO on HB 4698 (Rep. Hope), which would strike the current student photo entities and replace them with “educational institutions” and add a current local government photo identification card. I voted NO on HB 4699 (Rep. Byrnes), which would allow voters, once registered, to have an absent voter ballot sent to them before each election by submitting a single signed application covering all future elections. I voted NO on HBs 4700 & 4701 (Reps. Rheingans and Morgan), which would require the state to fund prepaid postage for absentee ballots and absentee ballot applications. I voted NO on HB 4702 (Rep. Tsernoglou), which would change the number of active registered electors in a city, ward, township, or village (precinct) from 2,999 to 5,000. EXPLANATION: I have always been a strong advocate for election integrity. These policies severely undermine election integrity by weakening signature verification and accepting ballots following an election.
ALL PASSED 56-53, except HB 4702 which passed 62-47
I voted NO on HBs 4191-4194 (Reps. Aiyash, Brabec, Edwards, and McFall), which would establish a program to provide state IDs and operator’s licenses to Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) parolees. EXPLANATION: Although assisting parolees with their paperwork prior to them getting out in society is admirable, it is unfair to provide free services to parolees while free Americans have to pay out of pocket for the same service.
ALL PASSED: 73-36
I voted NO on SB 125 & HB 4153 (Sen. Camilleri and Rep. Churches), which would create a local rail grade separation grant program within the Michigan Department of Transportation and the rail grade separation fund within the Department of Treasury. EXPLANATION: Our government currently has too many grant programs in place – this is yet another way to spend taxpayer money.
SB 125 PASSED 93-16, HB 4153 PASSED 95-14
I voted NO on HB 4515 (Rep. Hill), which would eliminate the sunset on off-road license fees that are set to expire on April 1, 2024. EXPLANATION: State taxpayers should not be additionally burdened to drive their vehicles on public land.
I voted NO on HBs 4173 & 4384 (Reps. Aiyash and Meerman), which would create the Michigan Sentencing Commission within the Legislative Council. EXPLANATION: We do not need another government-funded bureaucracy that duplicates duties and responsibilities of current departments. Additionally, the Legislature already has data from third party organizations that provide this information, making another commission a waste of time.
BOTH PASSED: 56-53