How Charlevoix County’s state legislators Sen. Wayne Schmidt and Rep. Triston Cole voted

• Senate Bill 637, Expand grass seed seller regulations: Passed 37 to 0 in the Senate
To revise details of a law that imposes a testing and labeling mandate on grass seed sellers. The bill would require cool season lawn and turf seed and mixtures to include a “sell by” date, and ban selling them if a state-mandated germination test was more than 15 months earlier. The bill would also require a larger font size be used on a required warning label.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• House Bill 5257, Revise liquor marketing regulations: Passed 35 to 1 in the Senate
To revise the very detailed regulations and restrictions on alcohol marketing so as to permit wholesalers and retailers to use social media to promote product tastings and inform consumers of where to find their products.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• Senate Bill 331, Ban parts shops paying cash for rims and tires: Passed 83 to 24 in the House
To prohibit used auto parts dealers from paying cash to an individual for used tires, wheels and rims. Only payments by traceable checks, electronic transfers, etc. would be allowed. This bill is intended as a theft prevention measure.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

• House Bill 4578, Authorize school recreation property taxes: Passed 108 to 0 in the House
To add school districts to a law that lets several local governments organize a recreational authority with the power to levy up to one-mill of property tax for swimming pools, recreation centers, public auditoriums, public conference centers and parks. The law is silent on whether the recreational facilities could be school facilities if the bill becomes law, but does require them to be open to the public. It also requires voters in each municipality to approve one of these tax levies.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona Y

• Senate Bill 800, Appropriations: 2016-2017 Omnibus budget: Passed 26 to 11 in the Senate
The Senate version of the non-education portion of the state government budget for the fiscal year that begins on Oct. 1, 2016. This would appropriate $38.673 billion, compared to $38.616 billion authorized the year before.
When combined with the education budget (next bill), the Senate proposes to spend $54.779 billion on all of state government next year, vs. $54.530 billion originally approved for the current year. Of this, $22.567 billion is federal money and $32.212 billion comes from state tax and fee collections, a 2.4 percent increase in the state share.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• Senate Bill 801, Appropriations: Omnibus education budget: Passed 23 to 13 in the Senate
The Senate version of the K-12 school aid, community college and university budgets for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, 2016. The bill would appropriate a total of $16.106 billion, of which $1.919 billion is federal money. Of this total, $14.107 billion would go to K-12 public education, compared to $13.896 billion the prior year. It also appropriates $1.6 billion for state universities, compared to $1.535 billion the prior year. Community colleges would get $399 million, vs. $388 million the prior year.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• House Bill 4990, Expand local government energy efficiency financing schemes: Passed 34 to 0 in the Senate
To expand the things cities can spend money on under a scheme that lets them contract with vendors for energy-related facility improvements, and pay for these with money the projects are supposed to save (or from regular tax revenue if savings don’t appear). The bill would allow vendor installment contract durations of up to 20 years, expand the improvements that can be financed under the scheme, and allow the deals to include lease-purchase agreements.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• House Bill 5078, Authorize paroling medically frail prisoners to a health care facility: Passed 95 to 13 in the House
To allow medically frail prisoners whose condition makes them “a minimal threat to society” to be paroled to a hospital, hospice, nursing home or other suitable accommodation for the balance of their term.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

• House Bill 5387, Give force to illegal teacher strike sanctions: Passed 59 to 49 in the House
To include more rigorous sanctions and more certain procedures for Detroit school teachers who participate in an illegal strike. The bill is part of a House proposal to overhaul the Detroit school district and would essentially cancel the current collective bargaining between unions and the Detroit district as part of the governance changes in House Bill 5384.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona Y

• House Bill 5384, Pay Detroit school debt, require reforms: Passed 57 to 51 in the House
To end the state’s emergency management of the insolvent Detroit school district, and give an elected school board control of the district’s schools. Among many other changes and reforms, the bill requires a meaningful merit pay system for Detroit teachers, and caps central office overhead costs. The bill does not contain a Senate-passed provision creating a new “Detroit Education Commission” appointed by the Detroit mayor and having the authority to block new charter schools from opening in the city, or an additional $200 million the Senate added for “transition costs.” This is part of $500 million Detroit Public Schools bailout and governance package.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona Y

• Senate Bill 564, Criminalize selling aborted fetuses or body parts: Passed 26 to 10 in the Senate
To make it a crime to receive a financial benefit or any type of compensation for transferring or selling an embryo, fetus or neonate, including organs, tissues or cells, if this was obtained as the result of an elective abortion.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• House Bill 4187, Authorize jail for vandalizing road signs, lights, etc.: Passed 36 to 0 in the Senate
To authorize criminal penalties of up to 93 days in jail and a $500 fine for vandalizing or removing a traffic control device, light post, sign, etc. on a road or highway. For a third or subsequent offense the penalty would be one year in prison and a $10,000 fine.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• Senate Bill 761, Remove obsolete provisions from state school code: Passed 30 to 6 in the Senate
To repeal an obsolete 1974 law dealing with education for gifted and academically talented students. This one of a number of bills repealing obsolete laws or reporting requirements, most of which passed unanimously. This one was opposed by six Democratic senators.
37 Sen. Wayne Schmidt R – Traverse City Y

• House Bill 5024, Study vehicle driver marijuana intoxication threshold standards: Passed 107 to 1 in the House
To create a new government commission to review and analyze research and state laws relating to THC (marijuana) bodily content levels for purposes of establishing levels that indicate impaired driving, and then make policy recommendations.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

• House Bill 4965, Create juvenile justice family advisory board: Passed 96 to 13 in the House
To create a family advisory board in the Department of Corrections to give advice on ways to support family reunification when a minor is incarcerated for committing a serious crime, and other steps intended to assist re-entry into the community and reduce recidivism.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

• House Bill 4966, Require out-of-cell exercise for young prisoners: Passed 93 to 16 in the House
To require the Department of Corrections to provide “age-appropriate out-of-cell programming and outdoor exercise” at least five days a week for prisoners who are less than 21 years old.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

• House Bill 4962, End “tried as an adult” for some serious juvenile offenses: Passed 90 to 19 in the House
To no longer automatically prosecute and sentence 17 year olds charged with serious crimes as if they were an adult.
105 Rep. Triston Cole R – Mancelona N

Courtesy of MichiganVotes.org
Y = Yes, N = No, X = Not Voting

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