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ACTION ALERTS

The League of Women Voters of Michigan often takes positions on legislative or citizen initiatives and other proposed governmental policy or regulatory decisions. If an initiative reaches a legislative committee, a voting body or other decision makers, the League may take action (testimony, letters, phone calls, public statements, etc). The lack of public action is not indicative of the numerous decisions to support or oppose an issue that the League makes on a regular basis.

November 27, 2017:  OPPOSE GUNS IN SCHOOLS AND OTHER PUBLIC SPACES

The Senate recently passed legislation that would change the handgun licensure law to allow carrying concealed weapons in places known as no-carry zones. Currently no-carry zones include schools, day care centers, hospitals, sports arenas, places of worship, a dormitory or classroom of a community college, or university and a large entertainment facility. The League of Women Voters opposes these bills (#584, #585 and #586) and urged voters to contact their State Representatives to oppose passge.  There is no reason for allowing weapons in these public places. The League believes we should protect the health and safety of citizens through limiting the accessibility and regulating the ownership of handguns and semi-automatic weapons.

October 18, 2017: OPPOSE CHANGES IN STATE'S ABILITY TO MAKE RULES

The Senate was nearing a vote on HB 4205, which would prohibit a state agency from adopting a rule, except an emergency rule, that is more stringent than a federally mandated standard, unless the agency determined there is a clear and convincing need. The bill passed the House already. The Michigan Environmental Council (MEC) noted that many of the rules that Michigan has adopted to protect the Great Lakes have stronger requirements than the federal government. Saying this bill would jeopardize Michigan's ability to protect our environment, the MEC and other groups oppose passage of this bill. The bill would apply to ALL state departments, including education, civil rights, etc.

September 6, 2017:  OPPOSE CHANGES IN MICHIGAN CAMPAIGN FINANCE LAW

The Senate is nearing a vote on SB 335, which would set state regulations for independent expenditure committees, more commonly known as Super PACs. The bill states that a corporation, joint stock company, labor organization could make an independent expenditure in any amount advocating the election or defeat of a candidate or the passage or defeat of a ballot question. It also allows candidates to urge donors to give money to these independent expenditure committees so that they would ultimately fund their own campaigns. While some of the changes reflect the Citizen's United decision, the language allowing candidates to coordinate their fundraising goes beyond that decision. The coordinated fundraising permitted in the bill calls into question the true independence of the spending, which Citizens United intended to allow. The League of Women Voters is committed to reforming our nation'scampaign finance system to ensure the public's right to know, combat corruption and undue influence, enable candidates to compete more equitably for public office and allow maximum citizen participation in the political process. The public has the right to know who funds candidates and how much is given to candidates. This bill would move Michigan in the wrong direction!

 

June 13, 2017:  OPPOSE LEGISLATION TO PROHIBIT WELCOMING CITIES

The League is urging supporters of welcoming cities TO contact their Michigan legislators to tell them to oppose HB 4105 and HB 4334. These bills would prohibit local units of government from adopting "welcoming cities" policies for their local communities. The evidence is clear that welcoming communities are safer, and support local economics. LWVMI believes the evidence is clear that welcoming communities provide us, as Americans, with a vision for a more inclusive future; a vision resting on principles that have guided us throughout our history, as we have welcomed immigrants, refugees, and seasonal workers to join us, as we build a stronger democracy for all. Local communities should have the right to decide if they want to adopt a welcoming community policy.

March 17, 2017: PROTECT LAKE MICHIGAN AND THE GREAT LAKES

Funding for the Great Lakes is cut by 97% in President Trump’s proposed budget, from $300 million to $10 million. Only $10 million for projects in eight states surrounding all five Great Lakes means that almost no restoration, protection, or research projects will be possible to ensure the future of our natural treasures. Tell your legislators to stand strong for the Lakes and to support: 1) Maintenance of $300 million in Great Lakes funding through the EPA, 2) Increases in water infrastructure program funding. We need to replace, and improve our wastewater and drinking water systems so that no other community experiences a crisis like our friends in Flint, Michigan. Your help is needed to get the message across. Call your Representative and Senators on March 14, 15, or 16 and tell them that Lake Michigan and the Great Lakes is important to you. Any member of Congress may be reached through the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

February 16, 2017:  OPPOSE ELIMINATION OF STATE INCOME TAX

HB 4001 has been recommended for passage by the MI House of Representative's House Policy Committee. This bill would reduce the income tax amount from 4.25% to 3.9% on January 1, 2018 and then reduce the annual rate by one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) until the rate reaches zero. The tax would be entirely eliminated over the next 39 years. The bill would cut revenues by $680 million in the 2017-2018 fiscal year and $1.2 billion in the 2018-2019 fiscal year. No cuts in budgets were discussed. According to Michigan Treasurer Nick Khouri tax law changes have reduced Michigan state and local taxes by $2.8 billion in total since 2011. According to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, the tax cut will greatly benefit wealthy MI citizens. The average tax cut in ten years by household income for households earning between $0 to $21,000 will be $56 and for the top 1% the tax cut will be $13,573 a year. The income tax accounted for about 67% of the general fund and 22% of the school aid revenue in FY2016. There is no replacement for the lost revenue. Funds for local units of government, services for people in need and the education of our children would be at risk. The League of Women Voters of Michigan has a taxation and budgeting position that states: All three broad-based taxes on income, sales and property should be relied upon, with more reliance on the income tax. Therefore, the LWVMI Board of Directors voted to oppose HB 4001 and urges League friends and members to contact their legislators to oppose this bill.

For Action Alerts and Advocacy prior to 2017, visit our Archives page.

Please visit the League of Women Voters of the US for the latest national action alerts.

 

recent action & advocacy

The League of Women Voters of Michigan often takes positions on legislative or citizen initiatives and other proposed governmental policy or regulatory decisions. If an initiative reaches a legislative committee, a voting body or other decision makers, the League may take action (testimony, letters, phone calls, public statements, etc). The lack of public action is not indicative of the numerous decisions to support or oppose an issue that the League makes on a regular basis.

December 20, 2017:  SHUT DOWN LINE 5 PIPELINE

LWVMI President Judy Karandjeff delivered testimonty to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality on December 20h urging the state to terminate the easement allowing Enbridge to use the lake bed for Line 5.Pipeline 5 occupies publicly owned waters and bottomlands. The threat of a catastrophic oil pipeline rupture to the Great Lakes is of tremendous controversy and has generated an extraordinary level of public engagement. We are all concerned about the possible threat of a spill and the permanent damage that could result. The voice of the people should be determining the future of the Great Lakes and its protection for future generations. We urge you to shut down Line 5. Read the complete testimony here.

June 7, 2017: SUPPORT WELCOMING COMMUNITIES

The League of Women Voters delivered testimony to members of the House Local Government Committee urging opposition to HB 4105 (H-1) and HB 4334 (H-1) which would penalize communities that follow the tenants of "sanctuary cities". the League of Women Voters of Michigan believes the evidence is clear that welcoming communities provide us, as Americans, with a vision for a more inclusive future; a vision resting on principles that have guided us throughout our history, as we have welcomed immigrants, refuges, and seasonal workers to join us, as we build a stronger democracy for all. Read the testimony here.

May 3, 2017

The League of Women Voters is one of nine voting rights groups who are supporting a proposed Constitutional Amendment that would modernize Michigan elections—ensuring every voter who takes the responsibility to vote has their voice heard and vote counted on Election Day. The voting rights groups and community leaders applauded the re-introduction of the Voter Bill of Rights, a proposal that protects Michigan citizen’s fundamental right to vote. The proposed constitutional amendment comes on the heels of the introduction of a myriad of bills aimed at limiting participation of eligible voters and putting up unnecessary obstacles to voting in the 2016 legislative session. Read the press release here.

March 23, 2017

A letter was sent to the members of the House Oversight Committee urging them to oppose HB 4205, the bill that will restrict state agencies from adopting state rules that are more stringent than federal rules. We do not support such an extreme ban because there may be a need or a desire to have more flexibility in promulgating rules to protect Michigan citizens. Read tthe complete letter here.

March 22, 2017

On March 22, the League delivered testimony to the members of the House of Representatives Natural Resources Committee concerning our opposition to SB 129, as passed by the Senate. While it can be agreed that there is less risk of sulfide-bearing rock while mining for copper, without an Environmental Impact Assessment there is little assurance that disturbed rock in the surrounding area will not release dangerous sulfuric acid. SB 129 does not guarantee or protect the right of public hearing or a comment period. It also prohibits the local government from regulating any aspect of mining activities such as hours of operation or roads traveled. Finally, this bill would impede the Department from making a thorough assessment by limiting the review process. Read the complete testimony here.


February 27, 2017

The League of Women Voters of Michigan submitted comments to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality in oppositionto Nestle’s water withdrawal request for the well at White Pine Springs, Osceola County, PW 101. Nestle’s multiple requests for small incremental increases had put them under the radar for a public comment period until they finally exceeded the 200,000 gallons per day, triggering the Safe Drinking Water Act review. Our organization believes that public understanding and cooperation are essential to the responsible and responsive management of our state’s natural resources and that increased withdrawals for agricultural or municipal use within the basin should be carefully evaluated and monitored before being permitted. Read the complete comments here.

 

For Action Alerts and Advocacy prior to 2017, visit our Archives page.