News & Events
MNA Legislative Update #21
Legislature Returns from Thanksgiving Hiatus
After two weeks away from the legislative process and the many challenges that need to be faced sooner rather than later, Michigan’s 38 senators and 110 representatives returned to Lansing this week for another stint of work. It would appear that they are desperately trying to move several things quickly in an effort to check items of importance off their personal agendas.
We Must Continue to Fight Against HB 4936
As the year rapidly draws to an end, some of the biggest legislative threats continue to show signs of movement and possible passage. We must do everything we can to ensure that HB 4936 does NOT pass the legislature. Remember that HB 4936 is an effort to drastically change our current Auto No-Fault insurance law. Last week, the House Insurance Committee voted the bill out, but we have yet to receive notice that it is scheduled to move on the House floor. Please click here to access our letter-writing campaign to legislators, asking them NOT to support this legislation. Additional information on Auto No-Fault can be found on our website at www.minurses.org.
Changes to Worker’s Comp Still a Threat
HB 5002, proposed changes to the Michigan Workers’ Disability Compensation Act, still needs our attention. This bill has already passed the House and is now in the Senate. We need to let our senators know that we do NOT support this legislation and that altering this law takes away important protections for workers. Please click here to send a letter to your state senator asking them not to support HB 5002. Let’s do our part to ensure that this does not pass the Senate.
Changes to Unemployment Benefits Pass the Senate
Yesterday, the Senate passed SB 806 on a party-line vote after a procedural chess match. Among other things, SB 806 increases the wage base employers pay unemployment taxes on, allows companies to get rid of bad jobless clean years faster and allows small businesses to spread their unemployment tax payments out over the course of the year. It also requires jobless workers to take a job after receiving 10 weeks of state assistance, no matter what field of training it is in, as long as it pays their area’s prevailing wage or is 120 percent more than their state assistance check. In addition, workers who don’t keep their training updated, who steal from their employer or are let go because they missed three days of work in a row without informing their boss, would not be eligible for jobless benefits.
House Version of Anti-Bullying Bill Passes Legislature
HB 4163, introduced by Rep. Phil Potvin – R, passed the Senate on Tuesday and will now head to the Governor’s desk for approval. While HB 4163 does not contain the controversial language regarding religion and morals that we saw in SB 137, it is not a strong piece of legislation. This bill is missing key components that were included in SB 45, an anti-bullying bill introduced by Sen. Glenn Anderson – D in January of this year. MNA’s Congress on Public Policy voted not to support HB 4163 because it left out the meat that would make such legislation strong and effective in protecting Michigan’s children.
Senate Republicans Introduce Recall Reform
According to an update from Gongwer News Service, the top two Republican leaders in the Senate have introduced a constitutional amendment limiting the reasons an elected official can be recalled. SJR S (Senate Joint Resolution S) would bar a recall based on the “discretionary performance or a lawful act or of a prescribed duty by an elected official.” Officials could be recalled for felony convictions, misdemeanor convictions involving a breach of the public trust, misappropriation of public resources and “any other official misconduct.” The resolution was introduced by Senate Majority Floor Leader Arlan Meekhof and Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville.
House Committee to Take Up PAC Legislation Next Week
The House Redistricting Committee is planning to take up and report out HB 5085 and 5086 next week. These bills are a package that appears to prohibit public employers from allowing payroll deduction for PACs. This legislation was introduced by Rep. Mike Shirkey (R) and has the potential to negatively impact the growth of Michigan's PACs during this upcoming election year. Please call your state representative and ask them to NOT support this legislation.
Help Us Build A Strong PAC!
It is now December and we are on the verge of 2012. Help us make a difference next year by signing up to contribute to the MNA PAC on a monthly or one-time basis. Any and all contributions are greatly appreciated and will have an impact as we work to get the right people elected next fall. If you have not already done so, please get on our website, http://www.minurses.org/legislation/mna-pac, to print off a form or you can email Mariam Robinson at email@example.com to request that a form be mailed to your home address.