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Re: E-M:/ Vote NO on Proposal 1?

Enviro-Mich message from Andrew Mutch <andrewimutch@yahoo.com>


Here's the current statutory language:


It appears that most of the language is consistent
with current law. You also note several sections
titled .amended:

Section 324.71101.amended

that I believe is enabling legislation that only takes
effect if the Amendment is approved. It appears that
there is some difference in the enabling legislation
and what you listed below. For example, in the
enabling legislation and current law, this section

"(c) The remainder of the money that is not
transferred under subdivisions (a) and (b) shall be
used, upon appropriation, for recreation projects and
for the administration of the recreation improvement
account. Of the money credited to recreational
projects in a fiscal year, not less than 25% shall be
expended on projects to repair damages as a result of
pollution, impairment, or destruction of air, water,
or other natural resources, or the public trust in
air, water, or other natural resources, as a result of
the use of off-road vehicles."

Andrew Mutch

--- Smileysmlc@aol.com wrote:

> Proposal 1 has no organized opposition and it
> probably seems like a 
> no-brainer to most people, especially those in the
> environmental community.  But 
> Proposal 1 deserves closer examination.
> The ballot language for Proposal 1 states:
> "A proposal to amend the State Constitution to
> require that money held in 
> conservation and recreation funds can only be used
> for their intended purposes."
> On the surface, who could disagree with such a
> purpose?  But how many people 
> have read the actual language of the proposal?  
> The full text of all proposals can be found at: 
> The most significant aspect of Proposal 1, at least
> in terms of dollars, 
> seems embodied in the following section establishing
> the "recreation improvement 
> account".  This section states:
> " The recreation improvement account is established
> as an account within the 
> legacy fund.  The recreation improvement account
> shall consist of all tax 
> revenue derived from the sale of two percent of the
> gasoline sold in this state 
> for consumption in internal combustion engines and
> other revenues as authorized 
> by law. Money in the recreation improvement account
> shall be distributed as 
> follows:
>    (a) Eighty percent of the money shall be annually
> transferred to the 
> waterways account to be used for the purposes of
> that account.
>    (b) Fourteen percent of the money shall be
> annually transferred to the 
> snowmobile account to be used for the purposes of
> that account.
>    (c) The remainder of the money that is not
> transferred under this section 
> shall be used, upon appropriation, for recreation
> projects, including grants 
> to state colleges and universities to implement
> recreation projects, and for 
> the administration of the recreation improvement
> account. <snip> "
> As further stated in the proposed Constitutional
> amendment, the waterways 
> account would fund:
> " (a) The construction, operation, and maintenance
> of recreational boating 
> facilities that provide public access to waterways
> or moorage of watercraft. 
> <snip>
> (c) Grants to local units of government and state
> colleges and universities 
> for the provision of public access or moorage of
> watercraft and law enforcement 
> or boating education to recreational watercraft
> operators.<snip>
> (d) The acquisition and development of harbors and
> public access sites.<snip>
> (g) Other uses as provided by law as long as the
> uses are consistent with the 
> development,
> improvement, operation, promotion, and maintenance
> of the stateâ??s waterways 
> programs. "
> The snowmobile account would primarily be for the
> "planning, construction, 
> maintenance, and acquisition of trails and areas for
> the use of snowmobiles."
> First of all, under present state law, are 2% of all
> sales taxes and gas 
> taxes from the sale of gasoline (are there any sales
> of gasoline in this state 
> which are not for use in internal combustion
> engines?) deposited into such a 
> fund?  Do 80% of those funds presently go into the
> waterways program, and 14% into 
> the snowmobile program?  Or is this a new set aside
> to benefit these programs?
> I, for one, do not want 94% of a multi-million
> dollar fund cemented into the 
> Constitution to forever fund dredging of harbors,
> access sites and snowmobile 
> trails which are oftentimes destructive.  I would
> much rather have those 
> millions of our tax dollars used to protect our
> natural heritage, not access it or 
> abuse it, as the case may be.
> It should be noted that these dollars,
> Constitutionally earmarked and very 
> hard to change, could be used to dredge the AuTrain
> River in the Upper 
> Peninsula, or for a variety of other ill-advised
> projects.  Proposal 1 deserves a lot 
> of scrutiny.
> Can anyone answer the questions relative to the
> present gas taxes and the 
> existing funds?
> Jack Smiley

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