House Bill 4234, Vehicle trade-in "sales tax on the difference": Passed 38 to 0 in the Senate

To exempt from sales tax the value of a trade-in when buying a new motor vehicle, titled watercraft or recreational vehicle, but phase this tax break in over 24 years, and halt the phase-in if the federal health care law's Medicaid expansion (authorized by House Bill 4714) is rescinded. Under this bill and Senate Bill 89, when fully phased-in the buyer would only pay sales tax on the difference between the value of the trade-in and the purchase price of the new car. Initially, the tax break would only apply to $2,000 of the price difference, which would increase $500 per year. When fully implemented the tax break's annual value would reach $226 million (in 2013 dollars).

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

House Concurrent Resolution 11, Authorize adoption of "Common Core" school standards: Passed by voice vote in the Senate

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To authorize the State Board of Education and the Michigan Department of Education to spend money to implement a "Common Core" curriculum promoted by an entity associated with the National Governors Association, subject to various restrictions and conditions specified in the resolution. The authorization does not apply to an associated student testing regime, and directs the state board and the department to make implementation contingent on local districts retaining the ability to adopt a different curriculum. Because this was a "voice vote" there is no record of who voted "yes" and who voted "no."

Senate Bill 436, Require financial institutions help enforce welfare benefit restrictions: Passed 35 to 3 in the Senate

To require a bank that operates automatic teller machines in a casino, liquor store, or "adult entertainment establishment" to "work with" state agencies to ensure it does not allow a person to use a welfare benefits "bridge card" to withdraw cash from those ATMs.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No" 

Senate Bill 479, Repeal interior designer registration: Passed 38 to 0 in the Senate

To repeal a law that establishes a government interior designer registry and makes it available to state and local agencies that enforce building permit mandates. To be included on the registry, a prospective designer must have passed a test created by a national designer organization, or be approved by a state board comprised of incumbent interior designers. Designers have lobbied to impose a full licensure and regulatory regime on this occupation, with several bills introduced in previous legislatures.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"  

Senate Bill 318, Repeal mandatory life sentences for minors: Passed 36 to 0 in the Senate

To repeal Michigan’s mandatory life sentence with no chance of parole for certain very serious crimes committed by minors, and replace it with a system in which prosecutors could request a genuine lifetime sentence. Under Senate Bill 319, if this request was not made or was denied, a judge would have to impose a minimum sentence of between 25 and 40 years, with a maximum of at least 60 years. These provisions would only apply prospectively, to cases still open as of the U.S. Supreme Court's Miller v. Alabama decision in June 2012.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No" 

Senate Bill 146, Extend enterprise zone tax breaks to a particular development: Passed 32 to 4 in the Senate

To revise a law that authorizes tax breaks for property owners in a “neighborhood enterprise zone” in a way that will allow granting these tax breaks retroactively to a particular developer's project.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No" 

House Bill 4353, Mandate schools have "EpiPens": Passed 96 to 10 in the House

To mandate that public schools must have at least two staffers who are trained in the administration of an epinephrine auto injector, and at least two of these "EpiPens" on site. This is a syringe prefilled with epinephrine that is used to treat anaphylactic reactions. This bill and House Bill 4352 extend legal immunity to school districts, boards, officials, staff and pharmacists for harm arising from use of the devices, except for gross negligence.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No" 

House Bill 4327, Allow reset of "tax increment finance" schemes: Passed 86 to 21 in the House

To allow "corridor improvement authorities" to "reset" their tax increment financing schemes (TIF) to reflect declining property assessments, which undermine their ability to divert property tax revenue from local governments and other taxing units to pay for the authority’s debt-funded spending projects and subsidies. A TIF "captures" the extra local property tax revenue that supposedly will result from these projects; this revenue is then used to repay money borrowed to fund that spending. The bill allows these authorities to change the base year from which future tax revenue increases ("increments") are measured.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No" 

Senate Bill 89, Vehicle trade-in "sales tax on the difference" only: Passed 99 to 9 in the House

To exempt from sales tax the value of a trade-in when buying a new motor vehicle, titled watercraft or recreational vehicle, but phase this tax break in over 24 years. This is the companion bill to House Bill 4234, described more fully above.

Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

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

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