Public Policy Update from the State Bar of Michigan
March 26–April 1, 2012
Volume 10 Issue 13

In the Capitol
Session schedule: The Michigan House of Representatives and Senate will not hold session this week and the week of April 9.
House Session Schedule
Senate Session Schedule

Complete Committee Meeting List

New Public Acts

Legislation Introduced 3/27–3/29
View all bills introduced 3/27-3/29

Of Interest to the Legal Community
SB 1043 Civil procedure; service of process; process server fees; revise, and allow fees for certain additional services. Amends sec. 2559 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.2559).

Of General Interest
HB 5514 Taxation; administration; offer-in-compromise program; provide for certain tax liabilities owed. Amends secs. 25 & 28 of 1941 PA 122 (MCL 205.25 & 205.28) & adds sec. 30d.

HB 5515 Civil rights; public records; legislative branch; include in freedom of information act. Amends sec. 2 of 1976 PA 442 (MCL 15.232).

HB 5519 Taxation; administration; offer-in-compromise program; provide for. Amends sec. 28 of 1941 PA 122 (MCL 205.28) & adds sec. 23a.

SB 1041 Civil rights; public records; legislative branch; include in freedom of information act. Amends sec. 2 of 1976 PA 442 (MCL 15.232).

In the Hall of Justice
First Amendment Challenge to Michigan State University Ordinance will be Argued Before Supreme Court This Week

Attorney Troy A. Scott is New Head of Human Resources for Michigan Supreme Court, Michigan Court of Appeals, and State Court Administrative Office

Proposed Judicial Conduct Rules Changes on Agenda for Michigan Supreme Court March 28 Public Administrative Hearing

At the Bar
Judicial Vacancy—38th Circuit Court, Monroe County
Hon. Joseph A. Costello, Jr. is vacating his seat at 38th Circuit Court, Monroe County. State Bar members interested in applying for the judgeship should submit an application by April 10, 2012.
View Information

The Executive Committee met on March 27, 2012 at which time the State Bar of Michigan adopted the following Public Policy positions:

2006-04 Proposed Amendment of Rule 3.204 of the Michigan Court Rules
The proposed amendment would remove the requirement to file a new action as a supplemental complaint, which would allow trial courts to consolidate cases in a way that is more compatible with trial court case management systems.
SBM Position: Support with recommended amendment urging actions involving child support, custody, or parenting time to be administered together.

2006-47 Proposed Amendment of Rules 1.109, 2.107, 2.113, 2.114, 2.518, 3.001, 3.101, 3.218, 3.800, 3.901, 3.903, 3.930, 4.001, 5.101, 5.113, 5.731, 6.007, 8.108, and 8.119 of the Michigan Court Rules
The proposed amendments of these rules would update the rules making them less "paper" focused and reflecting the use of electronic technology in the way courts process court records.
SBM Position: Support the goal of the proposed amendments but oppose as written.

2010-31 Proposed Amendment of Rule 5 of the Rules for the Board of Law Examiners
This proposed amendment would eliminate the requirement that an applicant for admission by motion be required to express an intention to maintain an office in the state. Michigan is among a minority of states that requires that assertion, and maintaining this provision has resulted in at least one state rejecting the petition for admission of a Michigan lawyer because Michigan retains this type of requirement.
SBM Position: Support the proposed amendment and request an effective date of January 1, 2012 to allow the legislature to act on a statutory change consistent with the proposed amendment.

2010-32 Proposed Amendment of Rule 3.210 of the Michigan Court Rules
The proposed amendments of MCR 3.210 were submitted to this Court by the Michigan Judges Association after conclusion of its work and input from its Domestic Relations Committee. The proposal would govern the entry of default and default judgment in domestic relations cases and would cover and clarify related procedural issues. While this proposal adds provisions that may be found in Chapter 2 of the Michigan Court Rules, these proposed amendments of MCR 3.210 attempt to clarify procedures to be used in domestic relations cases. The proposed amendment of MCR 3.210 also would allow parties to reach agreement on issues related to property division, custody, parenting time, and support, and enter a consent judgment on those issues if the court approves it.
SBM Position: Oppose.

2010-33 Proposed Adoption of New Rule 3.220 of the Michigan Court Rules
Proposed new MCR 3.220 would require the trial court judge to set a deadline for arbitration proceedings and approve any extensions of those time periods. Further, the proposed rule would allow arbitrators to issue interim awards during the arbitration proceeding.
SBM Position: Oppose.

Sections and Committees
The Criminal Law Section submitted Public Policy positions on the following items:
Oppose: HB 5050 Law enforcement; investigations; providing false information to peace officer conducting criminal investigation; prohibit, and provide penalties. Amends 1931 PA 328 (MCL 750.1750.568) by adding sec. 479c.

Support: HB 5191 Courts; judges; magistrates; require to be licensed attorneys. Amends sec. 8507 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.8507).

State News
Michigan Will Exempt Nursing Moms From Jury Duty
(Detroit News, 3/30/12)

Michigan Voters Would Have to Show Photo ID to Pick Up an Absentee Ballot Under House-Approved Bill
(Mlive.com, 3/29/12)

Parts of Gov. Rick Snyder's Public Safety Plan Remain Unapproved by Legislature
(Mlive.com, 3/29/12)

For Now, Judge Says, Voice Votes in House Can't Give Legislation Immediate Effect
(Detroit Free Press, 3/28/12)

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