House Bill 4049: Transfer power to close schools during epidemic to locals: Passed 20 to 15 in the Senate
To establish that the director of the Department of Health and Human Services does not have the authority to issue epidemic-related emergency orders that close schools for in-person instruction or prohibit school sporting events. The legislature gave this authority to the state health department director in the Public Health Code enacted in 1978; the bill would amend that law by instead giving this authority to local health departments.
Senate Bill 11: Require concealed pistol permits be processed during state of emergency: Passed 20 to 15 in the Senate
To establish that the emergency executive orders issued by the governor or the state health department do not relieve county clerks of their duty to process concealed pistol carry permits, or the State Police of their duty to provide fingerprinting services for this.
Senate Bill 118: Revise sanction on school district that hires unlicensed teacher: Passed 35 to 0 in the Senate
To revise a law that punishes a school district that hires an instructor, counselor or administrator who has not complied with the licensure mandates imposed by law on these professions. Currently, the amount paid to the individual is deducted from state school aid. The bill would deduct 50 percent for 10 days after a district is notified, and then revert to the usual 100% deduction. The same law makes it a felony subject to a $1,500 fine for a school official who fails to comply. The Senate Fiscal Agency reports that just under $1.0 million in penalties was assessed on districts in the 2019-20 school year.
House Bill 4048: Allocate more state and federal coronavirus relief dollars to schools: Passed 31 to 4 in the Senate
To appropriate $1.946 billion in additional school spending in the 2021-22 fiscal year, of which $1.876 billion is federal money and $170 million comes from state tax collections. However, $840 million of the federal money may only be spent if House Bill 4049 becomes law, which transfers the power to close schools during an epidemic from the state health department to local health departments.
House Bill 4048: Allocate more state and federal coronavirus relief dollars to schools: Passed 77 to 33 in the House
The House vote on the school spending bill described above.
House Bill 4047: Appropriate state and federal coronavirus dollars: Passed 34 to 1 in the Senate
To appropriate $2.309 billion in state and federal epidemic relief dollars, with $1.677 federal money and $632 million coming from state taxpayers. Of this, $600 million would go for food stamps, $150 million for unemployment benefits, $150 million to temporary raises for front-line social welfare direct care workers, $110 million for vaccines, $547 million for more coronavirus testing and lab grants, $282 million in rental housing subsidies of which $62 million is for administration, $300 million state dollars for property tax relief and much more. Of the testing and lab grant dollars, $347.3 million can only be spent if a bill passes limiting state health department emergency orders to 28 days without legislative approval (see Senate Bill 1).
House Bill 4047: Appropriate state and federal coronavirus dollars: Passed 85 to 25 in the House
The House vote on the supplemental spending bill described above.
House Bill 4061: Restrict “Integrated Public Alert Warning System” use by governor: Passed 63 to 47 in the House
To prohibit officials including the governor from using an official “Integrated Public Alert Warning System” to transmit an announcement of a new law or change in government policy, and instead limit its use to emergencies involving immediate or nearly immediate loss of life or property. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer used this system during a 2020 state of emergency she had ordered to make announcements that did not meet this standard. The system is described as a “secure network connecting all of the public alert and warning systems in the United States into a single system.”
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