Public Policy Update from the State Bar of Michigan
May 11-17, 2009
Volume 7 Issue 20

Please note: Next week's Public Policy Update will published on Tuesday, May 26 due to the holiday. Any interim questions can be directed to pcunningham@mail.michbar.org.

FOCUS: Revenue Estimating Conference
A Revenue Estimating Conference was held May 15. Gary Olson, Director, Senate Fiscal Agency; Mitch Bean, House Fiscal Agency; and Bob Kleine, State Treasure agreed to a consensus figure of a budget shortfall of $1.25 billion for FY 2009 and $1.7 billion for FY 2010.
Consensus Revenue Agreement, Executive Summary
Revenue Estimate Documents from Senate Fiscal Agency
Revenue Estimate Documents from House Fiscal Agency
Revenue Estimate Documents from the State Treasurer

Register Now! This Thursday, the Second Annual Michigan Public Defense Task Force Conference
The State Bar of Michigan is cosponsoring the 2nd Annual Michigan Public Defense Task Force Conference. The theme is "Reforming Michigan's Public Defense System: The Economic, Social, and Human Benefits." This free one-day conference, hosted at the Radisson Hotel Lansing, is an opportunity to engage in a discussion about Michigan's public defense system and the ongoing reform efforts taking place in Michigan. Join national and local experts in exploring critical public defense issues.
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Register

In the Capitol
Committee Meetings of Interest for the Week of 5/18
5/19 House Appropriations: General Government
Agenda Items of Interest: FY 2009-2010 Budget Presentations by Attorney General and Prosecuting Attorneys Coordinating Council.

5/20 House Judiciary
Agenda: HCR 21 A concurrent resolution to memorialize the Congress of the United States to exempt the auto industry from antitrust provisions for a limited time to facilitate the consolidation of the auto supplier industry in an orderly fashion; HR 100 A resolution to memorialize the Congress of the United States to exempt the auto industry from antitrust provisions for a limited time to facilitate the consolidation of the auto supplier industry in an orderly fashion; HB 4799 Establish restrictions on expenditure of proceeds of lawsuit settlements; Pending introduction and referral: An amendment to the Community Corrections Act establishing additional standards for participation in Community Corrections Programs.
Administrative Law Section Position on HB 4799: Oppose

5/20 House Senior Health, Security, and Retirement
Agenda: HB 4621 Allow testimony of a vulnerable adult to be presented by videotape or closed-circuit television.

Complete Committee Meeting List

New Public Acts

Legislation Introduced 5/12–5/14
Of Interest to the Legal Community

HB 4913 Property tax; tax tribunal; informal settlement conference; require if requested by petitioner. Amends 1973 PA 186 (MCL 205.701205.779) by adding sec. 35b.

HB 4915 Consumer protection; unfair trade practices; application of Michigan consumer protection act to certain conduct generally authorized by law; clarify and revise. Amends sec. 4 of 1976 PA 331 (MCL 445.904).

HB 4920 Corrections; parole; eligibility for parole for certain prisoners; revise. Amends sec. 34 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.234).

HB 4931 Criminal procedure; sentencing guidelines; sentencing guidelines for gang recruitment and retaliation violations; enact. Amends sec. 16t, ch. XVII of 1927 PA 175 (MCL 777.16t).

SB 0566 Traffic control; other; written notification of driver responsibility fee on citation issued for failing to have proof of insurance; require. Amends sec. 743 of 1949 PA 300 (MCL 257.743).

SB 0568 Family law; child custody; court review of arbitrator's decision on custody; allow court to take additional evidence. Amends sec. 5080 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.5080).

SB 0569 Family law; child custody; child custody disputes that have been arbitrated; require courts to resolve in accordance with domestic relations arbitration provisions of the RJA. Amends sec. 4 of 1970 PA 91 (MCL 722.24).

SB 0573 Consumer protection; unfair trade practices; application of Michigan consumer protection act to actions expressly permitted by law; clarify. Amends sec. 4 of 1976 PA 331 (MCL 445.904).

SB 0577 Criminal procedure; indictment; limitations for indictments for certain criminal violations; modify. Amends sec. 24, ch. VII of 1927 PA 175 (MCL 767.24).

In the Hall of Justice
Openings Still Available for Junior High Students in Michigan Supreme Court Learning Center Summer Law Program

Historic Centreville Courthouse Setting for Michigan Supreme Court Oral Argument; St. Joseph County High School Students Studied Case, Attended Oral Argument

At the Bar
Judicial Vacancy—17th Circuit Court
Hon. Steven M. Pestka is vacating his seat on the 17th Circuit Court. State Bar members interested in applying for the judgeship should submit an application by June 16, 2009.
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Attorneys Needed to Identify Accessibility Issues for People with Disabilities

SBM Young Lawyers Section Networking Stroll Set for May 21 in Birmingham

Sections and Committees
The Elder Law and Disability Rights Section submitted Public Policy reports on the following items:
Support: HB 4183 Insurance; health; coverage for certain treatments related to autism; provide for. Amends 1956 PA 218 (MCL 500.100500.8302) by adding sec. 3406s.

Support: HB 4476 Insurance; health care corporations; coverage for certain treatments related to autism; provide for. Amends 1980 PA 350 (MCL 550.1101550.1704) by adding sec. 416e.

Support: HB 4505 Probate; wills and estates; decisions regarding funeral, burial, or cremation; allow individual to designate a person to make decisions and require that the individual's instructions be followed. Amends secs. 3206, 3207, 3208, 3209 & 3614 of 1998 PA 386 (MCL 700.3206 et seq.) & adds sec. 3210.

The Negligence Law Section submitted a Public Policy report stating its support of HB 4845 Insurance; no-fault; notice and statute of limitations; provide for general amendments. Amends secs. 3141 & 3145 of 1956 PA 218 (MCL 500.3141 & 500.3145).

Federal News
Prosecutors Block Access to DNA Testing for Inmates
(New York Times, 5/17/09)

State News
Michigan Puts $3.8B in Stimulus Money to Work
(Detroit News, 5/18/09)

Michigan Web Site Tracks Stimulus Spending
(Detroit Free Press, 5/18/09)

Michigan Inmates Fall to Seven-Year Low
(Detroit News, 5/18/09)

State Budget Forecast: Cuts May Grow to 8%
(Lansing State Journal, 5/16/09)

More State Cutbacks on Way
(Detroit News, 5/16/09)

State Economy Faces Dire Future, Lawmakers Told
(Detroit Free Press, 5/15/09)

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