Auto insurance

Auto insurance reform stalls, lawmakers debate legislation to cut gas prices: The Week in Michigan Politics

LANSING, MI — Michiganders desperate for relief at the gas pump will have to wait at least a week to find out if the governor and legislative leaders can agree on a proposal to reduce high gas prices.

Republicans and a handful of Democrats voted this week to approve a bill that would temporarily suspend the state’s 27-cent-per-gallon gasoline tax. Governor Gretchen Whitmer suggested she would veto it, citing the reliance of road and bridge projects on the tax. She also announced on Friday that she would support a temporary suspension of the 6% gasoline sales tax.

Related: Governor Whitmer Supports Temporary Suspension of Michigan’s 6% Gasoline Sales Tax

Meanwhile, as car crash survivors and the companies that treat them continue to push for health care providers to be reimbursed when they treat auto-related injuries, the House Speaker , Jason Wentworth, announced this week that he was not interested in enacting further reforms to the state’s auto insurance laws.

Here’s what you missed this week in Michigan politics:

Amway Joins Wave of Michigan Companies Pulling Out of Russia

Amway World Headquarters (Lauren Petracca | MLive.com)

As the war in Ukraine escalates, Amway has joined a growing list of Michigan businesses to suspend operations in Russia.

“The continuing war, as well as the global legal and operational environment, make it impossible to continue operations as we have been in Russia, and we are therefore announcing the immediate suspension of product imports and will also suspend other operations “, said the Ada. -based company announced Monday, March 14.

Public school advocates launch effort to stop DeVos-backed school scholarship proposal

Launch of the For MI Kids For Our Schools campaign

State Board of Education Chair Casandra Ulbrich speaks during the virtual launch of the For MI Kids For Our Schools Voting Committee launch.

A new voting committee for MI Kids For Our Schools said during its virtual launch on Wednesday that all options are on the table to stop the Let MI Kids Learn voting initiative backed by Betsy DeVos, which public school advocates say , would create an unconstitutional voucher system in Michigan.

“I would say all options are on the table and I would be surprised if entities like ours who thought this was unconstitutional and did not challenge it based on these constitutional issues,” said Casandra Ulbrich, chair of the State Board. of Education. .

Supporters continue to push for changes to Michigan’s No-Fault Automobile Law. It’s not happening this quarter.

disaster hurt

Advocates for catastrophic car accident survivors and their healthcare providers gather at the Michigan Capitol to support changes to the state’s no-fault auto insurance law signed in 2019. (Samuel Robinson | MLive)

Car accident survivors and the companies that treat them have been demanding changes in the amount of reimbursement from health care providers when treating auto-related injuries since this new insurance policy took effect. Michigan no-fault insurance.

The state House speaker, a key player in driving the Legislature’s auto insurance overhaul in 2019, is not interested.

Last year, the introduction of a fee schedule reduced insurance companies’ reimbursement by 45% for health care services provided to traffic accident survivors not covered by health insurance . Many care providers say the change could put them out of business, and their patients say they are losing access to high-quality care.

Rep. Jewell Jones will no longer face jail time, sentenced to two years probation

Jones hearing

State Representative Jewell Jones (left) sits next to his attorney Byron Nolen during a hearing December 10 in a Livingston County courtroom.

Representative Jewell Jones’ legal saga that lasted nearly an entire year is finally over.

State Rep. Jewell Jones, D-Inkster, was sentenced to two years probation and 100 hours of community service on Thursday after pleading guilty to drunk driving, weapons and other charges stemming from his arrest in April 2021 in Livingston County.

Livingston County Judge Michael Hatty told Jones he had served enough jail time after being held in a Livingston County jail for two months in the fall, the attorney for the court said Thursday. legislator, Bryon Nolen. Jones was sentenced to two years probation under the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act and must complete 100 hours of community service. Jones was sentenced to 61 days in jail, but was credited with 61 days already served.

Some registered voters would have to confirm their identity under bills passed by the Senate

Michigan Senate

The Michigan Senate chamber is pictured after the session on Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022.

Republican senators passed legislation on Thursday that would require Michigan voters who haven’t voted since 2000 or are listed with a fictitious date of birth to send credentials to their local clerks to ensure their registration is not cancelled.

Legislation aimed at bolstering election security was passed by both houses mostly along party lines, but with the support of a handful of Democrats. However, it had no immediate effect when passed, meaning the laws would not come into force until at least next year, even if signed.

Michigan House Democrats propose banning guns at polling places

Voters will vote on three separate Lorain County levies in the May 3 primary ballot.

File photo of voters at a polling station.

Legislative Democrats unveiled a series of new election policy proposals on Wednesday, including keeping guns out of polling places and banning petition signature collectors from intentionally lying to people while soliciting signatures.

It’s the latest argument from lawmakers on either side of the aisle to change Michigan’s election law, an issue that has proven particularly divisive in the aftermath of the 2020 election.

The proposed firearms ban originally stemmed from a directive from Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, who prior to the 2020 election told all Michigan employees that the open carrying of firearms unless 100 feet from polling places would not be allowed. The move sparked a flurry of legal challenges, culminating in a Court of Appeals decision that blocked the ruling on the grounds that Benson should have gone through the state’s rule-making process before implementing such a decision. change.

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