Monday, February 16, 2009

Michigan Legislation A Go-Go

Thought we would bring you some of the fun ideas emanating from our esteemed lawmakers down in the pretty Dome. Info courtesy of Yes, it's the Mac Center, but go sign up for updates. It's very informative. Watch the Republicans increase spending while they reduce revenue! Identify baby wingnuts before they get into the press! Marvel at how they all want to blow holes in the tax code! Fun for the whole family!

Without getting into the mind-numbing tax stuff, here are some highlights from recently introduced legislation:

The "family values" party wants to repeal the state law prohibiting adultery.

Senate Bill 221 (Repeal state adultery law)

Introduced by Sen. Ron Jelinek (R) on February 12, 2009, to repeal the state law prohibiting adultery. This bill amends the sentencing guidelines statute.

You go, Ron! We won't tell Gary Glenn. Now that adultery is off the books, let's get that booze flowin' have a par-tay at your local senior village. After all, you won't have to make much of a fuss about checking IDs.

Senate Bill 216 (Authorize liquor licenses for continuing care retirement centers )

Introduced by Sen. Jason Allen (R) on February 11, 2009, to authorize liquor licenses for certain continuing care retirement centers.

Some Democrats got on board with that one as well. Naturally. Farmer's markets, too, can get in on some imbibing, but I have to ask, why not microbreweries? (or are they already allowed?)

House Bill 4147 (Allow farmers market wine tastings and sales)

Introduced by Rep. Goeff Hansen (R) on February 4, 2009, to authorize a special liquor license allowing Michigan winemakers (but not ones from other states) to sell wine and hold wine tastings at farmers markets and special events. The license would $25 per day.

And wouldn't you know it, here we are trying to loosen those puritan laws up a little bit, and the damn Democrats have to go and slap a tax on everything.

Senate Bill 44 (Impose $3 per customer on nude adult entertainment)

Introduced by Sen. Ray Basham (D) on January 27, 2009, to impose a state tax of $3 per customer on establishments that provide nude adult entertainment.

Geez. He's no fun. And under the "What in the Hell Brought This On" heading comes this offering from McManus...

Senate Bill 197 (Specify putative father paternity suit circumstances)

Introduced by Sen. Michelle McManus (R) on February 5, 2009, to establish in law the circumstances under which a putative father may sue to establish the paternity of a child born to a married woman. This would limit the ability of a putative father to bring a paternity suit if the mother had been married (to someone else) at any time between conception and the birth of the child, unless certain specific provisions spelled out in the bill applied and are met.

Alrighty then. Moving on to some wholesome ideas (a-hem), Valde Garcia comes up with some "Now That Hoogendyk is Gone..." legislation. Interestingly enough, this is another bill from a Senate Republican (and co-sponsored by 5 other Senate Republicans) that would "expand government", if only slightly.

Senate Bill 215 (Expand duties and rename state government Commission on Spanish-Speaking Affairs)

Introduced by Sen. Valde Garcia (R) on February 11, 2009, to change the name of the state government Commission on Spanish-Speaking Affairs to the “Hispanic/Latino Commission,” and require this commission to “coordinate a Hispanic Heritage Month celebration,” a Cinco de Mayo celebration, and a Cesar Chavez day celebration in addition to its current duties. These include securing "appropriate recognition of Spanish-speaking accomplishments,” advising the governor and legislature on the “coordination of state programs serving Spanish-speaking people” and on “the nature, magnitude, and priorities of the problems of Spanish-speaking people," etc.

Sounds good to me. More spending coming from a Republican, and this is sweet...

House Bill 4240 (Require state to pay for all hearing aids)

Introduced by Rep. Bill Caul (R) on February 11, 2009, to authorize a refundable income tax credit for the full amount paid for the purchase of hearing aids. Essentially, the state would reimburse all hearing aid purchases with no limit or means-test threshold.

Finally, from the "Awww, Too Bad Your Party Wouldn't Vote For It" Department come this offering from Tom George. Why is it Republicans won't take responsibility to acquire the money, but somehow think they are entitled to tell everyone how to spend it?

Senate Resolution 6

Introduced by Sen. Tom George (R) on February 3, 2009, to memorialize the Congress of the United States to tie the federal economic stimulus package distribution to the unemployment rate in each state and to provide that those states with the highest unemployment rates receive a higher percentage of federal funds. Passed in the Senate by voice vote on February 3, 2009

That's all for now...