Public Policy Update from the State Bar of Michigan
January 9–15, 2012
Volume 10 Issue 2

FOCUS: The Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference
The biannual Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference was held on January 12. It projected the FY 2012 General Fund will be $278 million over the May consensus, and the School Aid Fund will be $138.3 million over the May projections for a combined total of $416.3 million. FY 2013 projections add $126.5 million and $89.8 million respectively, for a total of $216.3 million.
Michigan Revenue Projection: We've Got $633 Million Extra
(Detroit Free Press, 1/14/12)
Report: Michigan to See Gradual Economic Recovery Over Next 3 Years
(Lansing State Journal, 1/13/12)
New Figures Affirm $1.2B State Surplus
(Detroit News, 1/12/12)

FOCUS: State of the State Address
Governor Snyder's second State of the State address is January 18 at 7 p.m.
State of Michigan: Rick Snyder to Call for Ethics Reform, Improved Customer Service
(Lansing State Journal, 1/17/12)

In the Capitol
Committee Meetings of Interest for the Week of 1/16
1/17 House Families, Children, and Seniors
Agenda Items of Interest: Testimony Only: HB 4067 Allow paternity of a child born to a married woman to be established in a man other than the husband; HB 4068 Provide for expedited provision of copy of acknowledgment of parentage to attorney or court clerk; HB 4069 Revise provision of certain birth records by the state registrar.
Family Law Section Position on HB 4067: Support and Amend
Family Law Section Position on HB 4068: Oppose
Family Law Section Position on HB 4069: Oppose

1/17 Senate Judiciary
Agenda: SB 845 Allow penalties for domestic violence with prior conviction to be enhanced with a deferred and dismissed conviction; SB 846 Enact sentencing guidelines for crime of domestic violence with prior conviction; SB 847 Enhance penalties for domestic violence with prior offenses; SB 848 Specify assault by strangulation or suffocation as assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder; SB 387 Provide mandatory minimum sentence for penalties for crime of fleeing and eluding a law enforcement officer; SB 388 Revise sentencing guidelines for crime of fleeing and eluding a peace officer to reflect increased penalties; And any other business properly before the committee.
SBM Position on SB 387 & SB 388: Oppose

1/19 House Local, Intergovernmental, and Regional Affairs
Agenda Item of Interest: Presentation by Kevin J. Bowling, J.D., Court Administrator 20th Judicial Circuit and Ottawa County Probate Courts.

1/19 House Judiciary
Agenda: HB 4072 Lower blood alcohol content for individuals operating a vessel, and establish a zero-tolerance provision; HB 4073 Enact sentencing guidelines for operating vessel while impaired by or under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance; HB 4794 Prohibit operation of a snowmobile by certain individuals under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance; HB 4795 Revise sentencing guidelines for operating snowmobile under influence of alcoholic liquor to include operating with any amount of schedule 1 controlled substances in operator's body; HB 5028 Prohibit operation of an off-road vehicle by certain individuals under the influence of or visibly impaired by alcohol or a controlled substance; HB 5029 Revise sentencing guidelines for operating ORV under influence of alcoholic liquor to include operating with any amount of schedule 1 controlled substances in operator's body; HB 5050 Prohibit providing false information to peace officer conducting criminal investigation, and provide penalties; HB 5051 Enact sentencing guidelines for crime of providing false information to a peace officer conducting a criminal investigation; HB 4725 Exempt information concerning minors who have been victims of child abuse or sex crimes from disclosure under the crime victims right act; HB 4261 Allow names and addresses of minors who have been victims of child abuse or sex crimes to be exempted from disclosure under freedom of information act; HB 4532 Create exceptions to prohibitions against unauthorized access to computers, computer systems, and computer networks for family members; HB 4374 Clarify provision regarding medical commutations; HB 4375 Expedite commutation hearings and procedures for prisoners who are terminally ill; HB 4393 Exempt certain minors presenting themselves for treatment from underage drinking violation under certain circumstances.
SBM Position on HB 4261: Support
Criminal Jurisprudence & Practice Committee Position on HB 4261: Support
Prisons & Corrections Section Position on HB 4374 & HB 4375: Support and Amend
SBM Position on HB 4725: Support

Complete Committee Meeting List

New Public Acts

Legislation Introduced 1/11
View all bills introduced 1/11

In the Hall of Justice
The Michigan Supreme Court will hold a public administrative hearing on Wednesday, January 25, 2012, in the Supreme Court courtroom located on the sixth floor of the Michigan Hall of Justice, 925 W. Ottawa St, Lansing, MI 48915. The hearing will begin promptly at 9:30 a.m. Persons who wish to address the Court regarding matters on the agenda should notify the Office of the Clerk of the Court in writing at P.O. Box 30052, Lansing, MI 48909, or by e-mail at MSC_clerk@courts.mi.gov, no later than Monday, January 23, 2012.

Agenda:
2004-55 Proposed Amendment of Rule 3.211 of the Michigan Court Rules
This proposed amendment would eliminate the requirement that the Supreme Court approve changes to the Uniform Support Order forms. Without explicit approval required by the Supreme Court, the forms would be updated like other forms that are revised on a regular basis within the State Court Administrative Office.
SBM Position: Support

2010-15 Proposed Amendment of Rule 6.005 of the Michigan Court Rules
This proposed amendment would clarify that trial counsel is required to make a defendant's file available to an appellate lawyer, and would be required to retain the file for at least five years. This file was prompted by reports of appellate counsel having difficulty obtaining trial materials (especially video or audio materials that were not transcribed as part of the transcript). The five-year period mirrors the five-year retention period contained in MRPC 1.15(b)(2).
SBM Position: Support
Appellate Practice Section Position: Support

2010-20 Proposed Amendment of Rule 6.302 of the Michigan Court Rules
This proposed amendment of MCR 6.302 would reinsert a requirement that a court advise a defendant who pleads guilty that the defendant's maximum possible prison sentence may be longer than the maximum possible prison sentence for a particular offense if the defendant falls within the parameters of the habitual offender statute (MCL 769.13). The statute allows a prosecutor to notify the defendant that the prosecutor intends to seek an enhanced sentence after the defendant pleads guilty. Thus, the sentence range given by the court may not take into account any sentence enhancement at the plea hearing.
SBM Position: Oppose

At the Bar
The State Bar of Michigan Public Policy, Image, and Identity Committee and Board of Commissioners will meet Friday, January 20. For more information, please contact pcunningham@mail.michbar.org.

Membership Alert Pertaining to Treasury Notice

Sections and Committees
The Prisons & Corrections Section submitted Public Policy positions on the following items:
Support and Amend: HB 4374 Corrections; prisoners; commutation hearings and procedures; clarify provision regarding medical commutations. Amends sec. 44 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.244).

Support and Amend: HB 4375 Corrections; prisoners; commutation hearings and procedures; expedite for prisoners who are terminally ill. Amends sec. 35 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.235).

Support and Amend: SB 232 Corrections; prisoners; commutation hearings and procedures; expedite for prisoners who are terminally ill. Amends sec. 35 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.235).

Support and Amend: SB 233 Corrections; prisoners; commutation hearings and procedures; clarify provision regarding medical commutations. Amends sec. 44 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.244).

Federal News
Supreme Court Refuses to Limited Use of Eyewitness Identification
(Washington Post, 1/11/12)

State News
Snyder Targets Crime, Poverty
(Detroit News, 1/17/12)

Michigan Legislature Sets Priorities in New Session
(Detroit News, 1/12/12)

Business Taxes Back on Michigan Lawmakers' Agenda
(Lansing State Journal, 1/11/12)

Links of Interest
Public Policy Resource Center | Michigan Supreme Court | Michigan Legislature | MCL Search Engines