Budget - The House and
Senate approved the MDEQ budget for 2004-05 which reduces
overall spending by $30 million dollars and reduces general fund
support for the department from $53 million last year to $25 million
this year (down from $101 million in 2001). One-time budget shifts
include matching federal water revolving fund money with payments from
previous year's loans ($16.3 million), with an additional $8 million
being eliminated by switching funding to the Refined Petroleum Fund
(generated by the 7/8 of a cent gasoline surcharge previously used for
underground storage tank cleanups.
The conference committee did not adopt the House proposed reductions in
by 8%, and reductions in general fund support for the department by 15%.
(f) That liability for response activities to address environmental contamination should be imposed upon those persons who are responsible for the environmental contamination.The use of CMI money to pay for a study to benefit the Dow Chemical Company is an inappropriate use of those funds - and breaks a promise to voters who supported the CMI bonds.
At the same time, no new sites of environmental contamination are being addressed by the state due to budget shortfalls.
MDNR Budget - The House and Senate approved the MDNR budget for 2004-05 which increases overall spending by $10 million dollars and increases general fund support for the department by $800,000.Payments in Lieu of Taxes are supported by $3.9 million in general fund and $3.9 million in restricted fund payments. Legislation is still needed to exempt payments from the State education tax, to freeze taxable values of state property and cap the mills assessed to state property.
On the calendar:
HB 5118 - A bill to create a childhood lead poisoning prevention and control commission
Natural Resources & Environmental Affairs will meet on Tuesday (9/14) at 3:00 PM to take up:
SB 1097 - Exempts Department of Natural Resources lake level special assessments.
SB 1148 - Authorizes military personnel to obtain from Department of Natural Resources licensing agents free hunting and fishing licenses.
SB 1177 - Expands eligibility for and activities authorized permit for hunting from an off-road vehicle for disabled individuals.
HB 4225 – Lowers the age for eligibility for hunting licenses to 14.
SB 722/723 - Expands the eligible businesses for pollution prevention loans and increases the size of the available loans.
HB 6122 – Provide grants to certain sugar beet cooperatives
The following were passed on 8/4/04:
HB 4880 -- Create and implement a manufactured housing specific tax.
HB 5844 -- Include for homestead property tax credit calculation amounts paid for Michigan manufactured housing specific tax.
HB 4111 -- Exempt from property taxes manufactured housing subject to specific tax.
HB 4868 -- Create a mobile homes manufactured home owners residency act.
HB 4869 -- Establish and clarify owners rights under the
home owners association act.
HB 5035 -- Revise membership of the mobile home commission.
On the calendar:
HB 5771 – A bill to increase and revise regulation of land disposal of septage.
HB 5772 – Amend sentencing guidelines for crime of knowingly making false report in domestic septage licensing application.
SB 953 - State; funds; loans to certain farmers for qualified agricultural energy production; provide for.
SB 955 - Property tax; exemptions; methane digester and methane digester electric generating system; exempt.
SB 757 - This bill places penalties on landlords that fail to remediate known lead paint hazards in rental units.
HB 5441 – a bill to clarify when "feasible and prudent" alternatives should be considered to a project that will impact wetlands. An amendment was added in committee regarding when the MDEQ must issue a permit that may jeopardize Michigan's delegation of the Clean Water Act - section 404 program.
HB 4106 -- Provide for state real estate transfer tax on transfer of certain manufactured homes.
HB 4879 -- Provide for exemption from sales tax on used
HB 4882 -- Eliminate use tax on manufactured home sales.
HB 5034 -- a bill to access mobile homes
as real property (vote taken, insufficient votes, vote reconsidered and
passed for the day - 8/4/04)
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 unlimitedIn committee:
Conservation and Outdoor Recreation will meet on Wednesday (9/15) to take up:
SB 1279 - Provide for a check-off option on income taxes for the Michigan state park endowment fund.
SB 1280 – Create a citizens committee for Michigan state parks.
SB 1281 – Create a gem of the parks award and a state park volunteer of the year award.
HJR L - Establish as a constitutional right for hunting, fishing, camping, or taking game.
Great Lakes and Tourism is scheduled to
meet on Wednesday (9/15) for a hearing on progress on the Great Lakes