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E-M:/ Michigan Environmental Council Capitol Update 6-24-05



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Enviro-Mich message from "James Clift" <jamesmec@voyager.net>
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SB 79 ? The House leadership improperly removed pending amendments to 
this recycling bills that would have forced a roll call vote on whether 
to tie the bill to the passage of the $7.50 / ton surcharge on solid 
waste.  The surcharge would ensure Michigan received some benefit from 
the 30% of our trash that comes from outside the state. 

The House appears to be ready to continue its shady procedural 
practices this week when they pass budget bills that don?t authorize 
any spending in order to avoid hard votes.

HB 4617 ? The House Government Operations Committee reported out a bill 
that relieves polluters from their responsibility to clean up 
contaminated sites and make it easier to sell contaminated property to 
unknowing buyers. 

Senate 

Passed: 

All Senate budgets were passed. The Senate passed the House Omnibus 
Appropriation bill after it stripped all appropriations and language 
from the bill (HB 4831).

On the calendar:

HB 4714 / 16 ? Bills to establish a nonnative species advisory council 
and to clarify penalties. 

SB 373 / HB 4465  - Natural resources; hunting; computer-assisted 
hunting from a remote location; prohibit.

SB 583 ? Revise the Michigan Next Energy authorities to allow tax 
breaks for the manufacturing of certain alternative energy technologies.

SB 584 ? Modify the definition of alternative energy zones.   

SB 334 ? A bill to provide for the annual approval of a low-income and 
energy efficiency charge to be placed on electrical and natural gas 
bills.  Only 10% of the money could be used for low-income energy 
efficiency programs under limited circumstances.  In addition, the bill 
repeals the authority of the Public Service Commission to implement 
demand side management programs. 

SB 337 - A bill to create a tax credit for historical buildings 
renovations.  The bill however creates them as SBT credits, which 
although generated by nonprofit groups would be sold to SBT tax payers. 
A grant program to the nonprofits could serve the same purpose 
directly. 

In committee: 

Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs will meet on Tuesday (6/28) 
at 3:00 p.m. to take up: 

HB 4071 /HB 4145 - Allow individuals to donate game or to donate an 
additional $1.00 when purchasing hunting or fishing licenses to the 
sportsmen against hunger program. 

House 

Passed: 

HB 4679 ? A bill to provide for downtown development authorities inside 
of townships under certain conditions.  This bill is likely targeted to 
allow a downtown development authority for the construction of 
infrastructure to allow the building of a mega-mall. 

HB 4217 ? A bill to require language be printed on front of ballot 
petition if circulator is being paid and by whom.  The problem with the 
bill is that this information is not known at the time of the printing 
of ballot forms and thus will serve to increase the cost of the 
public?s access to the ballot.  

HB 4328 ? A bill to revise the size of initiative and referendum 
petition form in such a way to allow them on 8.5 by 11 sheet of paper 
in some instances. 

SB 79 ? A bill to authorize a local recycling fee. An amendment was 
offered which would tie-bar this bill to the solid waste surcharge 
bills (at which time further action was postponed on the bills. 

HB 4860 ? A bill to clarify a municipality has no liability if it is 
forced to take over a private waste water facility.

SB 356 ? Clarifies that private waste water facilities are subject to 
environment laws. 

SB 419 -  Allows the Public Service Commission to set rates for private 
waste water treatment facilities.

On the calendar: 

HB 4617 ? A bill be require site specific testing in order for a 
property to be considered a contaminated ?facility? under part 201.  
This will result in responsible parties avoiding cleanups and sales to 
unknowing buyers.  

SB 522 - A bill to exempt local authority over pipe line siting along 
the right-of-way of limited access highways.  This bill is a follow-up 
to the City of Lansing?s denial of a proposal by Wolverine Pipeline to 
bypass Lansing following a route along I-96. 

SB 211 through SB 217, and SB 507 establish on nonnative species 
advisory council, establish the duties, establish certain prohibit 
insect and plant species, and clarify penalties for  violations.

HB 4803 ? A bill to require school to begin after Labor Day.

HB 4576 ? A bill to establish the allowable uses at dedicated public 
access sites. 

HB 4204 - This bill eliminates the 6 cent sales tax on gas to the 
extent that it exceeds $2.30 gallon. 

HB 4257 - The bill reduces the taxes that farmers would pay on their 
property to $5 acre be providing them a tax credit against their income 
or Single Business Tax payment to property taxes paid above that 
amount. The program is limited to only 200,000 acres - in order to 
limit the lost tax revenue to the state to $2-3 million.  If applied to 
all property the bill would cost the state more than $30 million a year 
(depending on enrollment).  Unlike the current program (PA 116), this 
act has does not limit the property taxes credit based on the income 
level of the taxpayer. The bill does not follow the recommendations of 
the Michigan Land Use Leadership Council on this point. 

HB 4235 a bill to require 2% biodiesel to be included in diesel fuel 
sold within the state. 

In committee: 

Appropriations will meet Tuesday at 10:00 am to take up all the Senate 
budget bills are currently in this committee.  It is expected that the 
committee will remove all spending and pass the bills without any 
substance in order to move them to conference committee but avoiding 
votes on any controversial provisions. 

Transportation will meet on Tuesday (6/21) at 9:00 am to take up: 

HB 4892 ? a bill to exempt County Road Commissions from having to 
mitigate for any wetland destruction within the right-a-way of a road. 

HB 4190 ? Allow the abolishment of certain grade crossings on railroads 
if fewer than 1,000 vehicles a day use that crossing.

Natural Resources, Great Lakes, Land Use, and Environment will meet on 
Thursday (6/9) at 9:00 am for a presentation by: Steve Yencich with the 
Michigan Hotel, Motel, and Resort Association.
 

Submitted by: 

James Clift 
Brad Garmon 
Ben Stupka
Michigan Environmental Council 
119 Pere Marquette, Ste 2A 
Lansing, MI 48912 
(517) 487-9539 
www.mecprotects.org




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