House GOP Moves Forward on its Agenda to Hamstring the Department of Environmental Quality’s Ability to Protect Public Health -- Proposed budget eliminates the Hazardous Waste Management Program - cut general fund support by 15% - staffing levels by 8% . (See HB 1066 below - House Calendar)
couple of quick thoughts on the issue because I can't stop myself:
Reps. Pastor and Moolenaar proposed ending all testing for dioxin
statewide. Dioxin is the most potent animal carcinogen ever tested -
it has been found to cause tumors in both genders of every species and
every strain of animal that's been tested. Stop testing for dioxin
in our communities? -- Who are these guys representing? -- not any
of the public that I have ever met.
We keep hearing from the House GOP on the importance of timely permits
in retaining Michigan
jobs -- so what do they propose -- eliminating 8%
of the MDEQ's staff -- and requiring any company managing hazardous
waste to travel to Chicago for any permit or meeting with regulators.
When are these guys going to stop the political games and get serious
about our budget crisis and protecting jobs and the environment in
SB 926 - A bill to extend the prohibition of feeding deer and elk in certain parts of the state.
SB 953 - This bill directs the state to invest "surplus funds" in underwriting qualified agricultural energy production loans. Loans could be made systems such as methane digesters, biomass gasification technology and ethanol plants. A farmer who had been guilty of a criminal violation or responsible for a civil violation of water discharge laws would not be eligible for a period of one year.
SB 955 - The bill exempts from property taxes methane digesters electric generating systems.
SR 143 -- A resolution to encourage the further utilization of methane digestion in Michigan.
On the calendar:
HB 5681 – Establishes penalties for the destruction to vegetation or property in Mackinac Island state park.
SB 1132 -- This bill will require the Auditor General to do a performance audit of state laboratories and to compare their costs with private labs.
SB 1133 -- Creates a voluntary Laboratory Data Quality Assurance Program that labs in Michigan could participate in, possibly making them more attractive to use by the state or private entities.
SB 1135 -- Creates the Laboratory Data Quality Assurance CouncilHB 4729 -- Amends the statute controlling aquatic nuisances to enhance sanctions for violations.
HB 4730 -- Amends the statute controlling aquatic nuisances reduce the regulation applied to the applicants of aquatic pesticides and limits the reasons that the department could deny a permit. Any permit not acted on within 15 days is granted. The Michigan Environmental Council opposes this bill.Recycling bills:
SB 532 and SB 533-- anti-littering legislation
SB 853 -- Reporting on the nature and the amount of litter collected under the adopt-a-river program
SB 854 - creates statewide recycling coordinator position
SB 855 - Reporting on the nature and the amount of litter collected under the adopt-a-shoreline program
SB 856 - Requires the state to conduct a comprehensive study on littering and create a marketing program to reduce litter
SB 857 - Reporting on the nature and the amount of litter collected under the adopt-a-trail program
SB 858 - Reporting on the nature and the amount of litter collected under the adopt-a-park program
SB 860 - Establishes a 1-800 number for reporting littering violations
SB 861 - Sets statewide goals for recycling rates (30% by 2009, 50% by 2014)In committee:
Finance will meet on Wednesday (6/9) at 1:00 pm, the agenda includes a discussion with State Treasurer Jay Rising and the following bills:
SB 13 - Prohibit under certain circumstances assessment increases for new construction, mobile homes, or structures used to house a senior citizen family member.
SB 477 -
Establishes a value-based tax for
Natural Resources & Environmental Affairs will meet on Tuesday (6/8) at 3:00 pm to take up:
Testimony given by the Department of Environmental Quality on Oversight of PA 148 of 2003
SB 1171 - Expands the definition of litter to include abandoned vehicles – and makes the owner the presumptive person responsible for its proper disposal.
SB 1278 – Regulates the operation of airboats.
SB 1279 -- Provide for check-off option on the income tax form for the Michigan state park endowment fund.
SB 1280 – Establishes a citizens committee for Michigan state parks.
SB 1281 – Creates a gem of the parks award and a state park volunteer of the year award.
HB 5711 -- Provides a income tax credit to homeowners who remove and replace certain infested trees.
On the calendar:
SB 1066 -- MDEQ Budget - fiscal year 2004-05- On Thursday (6/3) the House Appropriation Committee approved a budget for the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) that eliminates the Hazardous Waste Management Program, reduces staffing levels by 8%, and reduces general fund support for the department by 15%.
SB 1068 -- MDNR Budget for fiscal year 2004-05 - The House
version removes travel cuts made by the Senate, removed timber cut
mandate language and returned to a version closer to that recommended
by the administration.
HB 5876 - This bill similar to a dozen others -- requires
that the state issue permits within an agreed time limit or fees are
refunded to the applicant. This bill deals with 44 different programs
within the Department of Environmental Quality. The Michigan
Environmental Council opposed the bill -- due to the fact that the
legislature at the same time is cutting the MDEQ budget (down to $38
million from $101 million in 2001).
HB 4106 -- Provide for state real estate transfer tax on
of certain manufactured homes.
HB 4879 -- Provide for exemption from sales tax on used
HB 4882 -- Eliminate use tax on manufactured home sales.
HB 4880 -- Create and implement a manufactured housing
HB 5844 -- Include for homestead property tax credit
amounts paid for Michigan manufactured housing specific tax.
HB 4111 -- Exempt from property taxes manufactured housing
to specific tax.
HB 4868 -- Create a mobile homes manufactured home owners
HB 4869 -- Establish and clarify owners rights under the
home owners association act.
HB 5035 -- Revise membership of the mobile home commission.
HB 5034 -- a bill to access mobile homes as real property.
HB 4358 -- To increase the length limit for trucks to 65 feet.
SB 510 -- a bill to establish stormwater fees.
HB 5312 -- allows hunters to donate an additional $1.00 when purchasing hunting or fishing licensing to support the sportsmen against hunger program
SB 193 -- Provides for a specialty license plates for ducks unlimited
Agriculture and Resource Management will meet Tuesday (6/8)
at 10:30 am to take up HB 5919 -- a bill to designate the Michigan
Treasure Cookie the state cookie.
Judiciary will meet on Tuesday (6/8) at 9:00 am to take up a
number of bills and for a special
presentation by Michigan Surgeon General
Kimberlydawn Wisdom, regarding lead paint issues in Michigan.
Land Use and Environment will meet on Wednesday (6/9) at 2:00 pm of after session to take up HR 261 -- a resolution to urge the Ontario Minister of the Environment to establish new landfills and landfill expansions
Select Committee on the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department will meet on Monday, (6/7) at 6:30 PM at the Bloomfield Township Public Library, 1099 Lone Pine Road Bloomfield, MI 48302 for a hearing on the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department Rate Setting Process
meet on Thursday (6/10) at 9:00 AM to
take up a number of bills including HR 232 / HCR 53 - resolutions to call upon the Michigan
Department of Transportation to review the current status of
road salt based on information from existing studies, trials, and tests
make recommendations for advancing the use of alternatives at the state
Natural Resources and Environmental Quality will meet on
(6/1) at 9:00 AM to take up: