Every week, MichiganVotes.org sends a report on interesting votes and bills in the Michigan Legislature, and includes how each legislator voted. To find out who your state senator is and how to contact him or her go here; for state representatives go here.

House Bill 4325, Fiscal Year 2011-2012 Education Budget, passed 57 to 53 in the House
The House version of the Fiscal Year 2011-2012 school aid, community college and university budgets. A separate House budget authorizes the rest of state government spending (House Bill 4526). This bill would appropriate $12.26 billion for K-12 public schools, compared to $12.17 billion recommended by Gov. Rick Snyder and $13.13 billion the previous year (which was inflated by $420 million in “stimulus” and other federal money, including required state matching funds). Per-pupil grants would be reduced by around $270 (exact amount varies by district), vs. a $300 reduction proposed by the Governor, and a $170 cut passed by the Senate.

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The bill also appropriates $1.36 billion for state universities, the amount recommended by the Governor, compared to $1.58 billion the previous year. Community colleges would get $251.9 million, vs. $295.8 million last year, which was also the amount recommended by Gov. Snyder. $795 million of the college and university budgets would come from tax revenue earmarked to the School Aid Fund, which in the past has mostly been used just for K-12 funding. The House concurs with the Governor’s proposal to cut more from universities that raise tuition by more than 7.1 percent. In contrast, the Senate-passed budget uses less School Aid Fund money for colleges and universities, and does not have the university tuition restraint penalties. The House also penalizes universities that provide domestic partner benefits to unmarried employees.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

House Bill 4526, Fiscal Year 2011-2012 State Budget, passed 62 to 48 in the House
The House version of the Fiscal Year 2011-2012 state government budget. A separate House budget authorizes school, college and university spending (House Bill 4325). This one would appropriate $32.522 billion in gross spending for everything else, compared to $32.778 the previous year and $32.775 billion recommended by Gov. Rick Snyder. Approximately, $17.31 billion of this budget is federal money, leaving $15.21 billion raised from Michigan sources, compared to $14.48 billion the previous year.

Highlights include: Welfare and Medicaid spending total $20.78 billion (compared to $21.07 billion this year), $6.4 billion of which comes from state taxpayers, with the rest federal money. The House imposes higher welfare recipient work requirements, and eliminates some benefits such as clothing subsidies. It concurs with Gov. Snyder’s $250 million cut in state revenue sharing to local governments ($200 milllion of which will be given back to ones that adopt employee benefit and other reforms), and his plan to stop using the tax code to provide selective corporate tax breaks and subsidies, and instead directly appropriate subsidies totalling $75 million (including “Pure Michigan” tourism industry subsidies).

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

Senate Bill 272, Limit state department rulemaking authority, passed 27 to 11 in the Senate
To prohibit a state department from promulgating rules more stringent than required by federal standards, unless specifically authorized in statute. This is part of a multi-bill Senate Republican regulation reform package.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"


SOURCE: MichiganVotes.org, a free, nonpartisan website created by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, providing concise, nonpartisan, plain-English descriptions of every bill and vote in the Michigan House and Senate. Please visit MichiganVotes.org.