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MichiganVotes.org is a free, non-partisan website created by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy to provide concise, non-partisan, plain-English descriptions of every bill and vote in the Michigan House and Senate. This report was released Friday, Sept. 25.

Senate Bill 757: Permit early counting of absentee ballots - To permit clerks in larger communities (above 25,000) to begin opening and processing absentee ballots the day before an election, under rules prescribed by the bill.

Passed 35 to 2 in the Senate

Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-Dist. 14) YES

Sen. Jim Runestad (R-Dist. 15) YES

Sen. Lana Theis (R-Dist. 22) NO

Sen. Jim Ananich (D-Dist. 27) Did Not Vote

Sen. Ken Horn (R-Dist. 32) YES

House Bill 4982: Authorize marijuana offense expungements and more - To allow a person to petition to have a past marijuana offense that would be legal under current law expunged from his or her record, and require courts to grant it. This is part of bill package now on its way to the governor that expands and eases the criteria for getting less serious crimes removed from an individual’s record.

Passed 35 to 2 in the Senate

Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-Dist. 14) YES

Sen. Jim Runestad (R-Dist. 15) YES

Sen. Lana Theis (R-Dist. 22) YES

Sen. Jim Ananich (D-Dist. 27) YES

Sen. Ken Horn (R-Dist. 32) YES

House Bill 5396: State budget for 2020-2021 fiscal year - To approve a state government budget for the fiscal year that begins on Oct. 1, 2020 (the education budget is in Senate Bill 927). This bill authorizes $42.109 billion in total (non-education) spending, of which $21.336 billion comes from state taxpayers, and $20.773 from federal taxpayers (and lenders). Altogether, the two “omnibus” spending bills authorize $61.565 billion in total spending for the coming fiscal year. This is an increase from $57.784 billion in fiscal year 2018-19, before the coronavirus epidemic.

Passed 37 to 0 in the Senate

Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-Dist. 14) YES

Sen. Jim Runestad (R-Dist. 15) YES

Sen. Lana Theis (R-Dist. 22) YES

Sen. Jim Ananich (D-Dist. 27) YES

Sen. Ken Horn (R-Dist. 32) YES

Passed 101 to 4 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51)  YES

Senate Bill 927: State education budget for 2020-2021 - To approve a state education budget for the fiscal year that begins on Oct. 1, 2020. This authorizes spending a total of $17.651 billion, of which $15.718 billion comes from state taxpayers, and $1.933 from the federal government. Public schools would get $15.525 billion, state universities $1.700 billion, and community colleges $426 million.

Passed 36 to 1 in the Senate

Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-Dist. 14) YES

Sen. Jim Runestad (R-Dist. 15) YES

Sen. Lana Theis (R-Dist. 22) YES

Sen. Jim Ananich (D-Dist. 27) YES

Sen. Ken Horn (R-Dist. 32) YES

Passed 103 to 2 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51)  YES

House Bill 5854: Repeal minimum sentences in various laws - To repeal a mandatory five-day sentence for driving drunk or drugged, and to allow “specialty” courts that can mandate various treatment options to manage subsequent offenses rather than ordering mandatory jail time. This is part of a legislative package that repeals mandatory minimum sentences in other laws, and part of a larger sentencing reform project aimed at not incarcerating individuals for petty or less serious crimes.

Passed 106 to 0 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51)  YES

Senate Bill 385: Repeal ticket scalping ban, restrict ticket resale websites - To repeal a state law that bans ticket “scalping” at sports and entertainment events, and prohibit the sale or use of software primarily designed to interfere with an event sponsor’s internet ticket sale operation, or with a website that is designed to ensure an equitable ticket allocation process.

Passed 91 to 14 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51) NO

House Bill 6032: Coronavirus response bills – employee lawsuits - To authorize employee lawsuits against an employer who takes an “adverse employment action” or “retaliates” against a worker who is absent during the declared coronavirus epidemic emergency because the individual is “self-isolating or self-quarantining” in response to an elevated risk or diagnosis. Also, to require employees who test positive for the disease or have symptoms to self-quarantine and not go to work, as specified in the bill.

Passed 83 to 23 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51)  YES

House Bill 6030: Coronavirus liability exemptions for business and facilities - To establish that a business, facility owner and others are not liable for a claim that arises from exposure of an individual to COVID-19 on the premises unless it was a deliberate act intended to cause harm, and as long as the facility was operated in compliance with federal and state laws, regulations, executive orders, etc. This would also apply to any person in the distribution chain of personal protective equipment, medical devices, drugs and more used to treat or prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Passed 57 to 49 in the House

Rep. Hank Vaupel (R-Dist. 47)  YES

Rep. Mike Mueller (R-Dist. 51)  YES

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