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Review our new Government Relations Update - Caucus Call: Lansing

Pete Langley
Week of Jan. 31, 2022
01.31.2022

Caucus Call Lansing

This Week's Updates

The Michigan House and Senate will be in session Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week.

Governor’s State of the State Address 2022

  • Who needs to know: Businesses operating in Michigan
  • Potential impact: Multiple proposals from Gov. Whitmer could impact your bottom line.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer delivered her fourth State of the State speech last week. Her speech covered far-reaching topics like the economy, roads, the environment and education. It was the type of speech that you would expect in an election year. While the speech itself didn’t contain many specific proposals, a series of emails following the presentation laid out her plans in greater detail.

Taxes

Whitmer spent a significant amount of time discussing taxes. While her plans don’t include specific targets for change, she identified the follow changes:

    • Retirement Tax – she proposed rolling back the taxes on retirement income, including pensions, 401ks and IRAs.
    • EITC – her plan would increase the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Earlier in the day, Senate Republicans started hearings on legislation that would decrease the Michigan Corporate Income Tax.

Economy

During the presentation, Whitmer addressed the issue of inflation and wanting to address increased cost of living for Michigan’s citizens. Her solutions included:

    • Insulin – Whitmer supported legislation that would cap the cost of insulin at $50 a month.
    • Electric Vehicles – she proposed a credit of $2,500 for the purchase of electric vehicles. It would be split into a $2,000 rebate for the vehicle and $500 rebate for the home charging equipment.
    • GM Investment – Whitmer also touted the announcement from earlier in the week where General Motors committed to a nearly $7 billion investment in the state of Michigan.
    • Auto Insurance – Whitmer also reiterated her signing of the legislation to amend Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance law that will save drivers money, while also mentioning the rebate that drivers will be getting from the Catastrophic Claims fund.

How her speech and proposals will play out in the Republican led Legislature during this election year remains to be seen.

Healthy MI Climate Plan

  • Who needs to know: Manufacturers and business operating in regulated industries
  • Potential impact: Portions of the proposed plan would drastically change the way that businesses operate in Michigan and the services that are provided.

On Jan. 14, the Michigan Department of Energy, Great Lakes and the Environment released a draft plan to address climate change in Michigan. The Michigan Healthy Climate Plan is the work product of the Michigan Council on Climate Solutions and covers numerous topics. The goal of the group is to support Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s call to reduce carbon emissions by 52% by 2030 and 100% carbon neutrality by 2050. Key focus areas included:

    • Energy Production – the goal is to switch to 100% clean, renewable electricity paired with robust energy storage. The plan includes adopting a renewable energy standard of 50% by 2030 and ending the use of coal-fired power electricity production by 2035.
    • Transportation – the goal is to build the infrastructure to support two million electric vehicles by 2030. The plan includes the electric vehicle purchase program described above and adoption of a clean fuels’ standard.
    • Businesses and Homes – the goal is to adopt a 2% energy waste reduction target for electricity and 1% for natural gas. The plan includes investments in clean energy and adopting the 2021 Model Energy Code, which includes provisions for electric vehicle charging and building decarbonization.
    • Environmental Justice – the goal is meet the Justice40 guidelines. The plan includes job training to make Michigan a leader in clean energy jobs and incentivize clean energy businesses to invest in Michigan.
    • Leadership and Innovation – the goal is to encourage development of clean industrial hubs and support research and development focused on reducing GHG emissions in key industries. The plan includes tripling the state’s recycling rate to 45% by 2030.

The plan provides a broad outline for activities that should be undertaken by the state and includes legislative proposals and administrative rule suggestions. Portions of the plan have been introduced or are in various stages of development.

The Week Ahead:

  • Tuesday, the Senate Energy and Technology Committee will be hearing a presentation by the Michigan Public Service Commission on Ratemaking and Economic Development.
  • Wednesday, the Mackinac Straits Corridor Authority will meet.
  • Thursday, the Certificate of Need Commission will meet.
  • Thursday, the Michigan Public Service Commission will be meet.
  • Friday, there will be a public meeting to discuss Michigan Administrative Rule 2019-138 dealing with elevators.

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