Whitmer Signs Bills Boosting Jobs, Supporting Michigan Tourism, Other Legislation 

 

Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently signed nine bipartisan bills into law. The governor signed House Bills 4232, 4527, 5258, 5386, 5555, 5875, 5983, 5984 and Senate Bill 821, bringing the total of bipartisan bills signed by Governor Whitmer to 849.   

 

“Since I took office, I am proud to have signed over 849 bipartisan bills, and today we are adding to that total with a bill to help small businesses across the state,” said Governor Whitmer. “While these bills continue our record of bipartisan collaboration, Michiganders are counting on us to continue growing Michigan’s economy, creating good-paying jobs, and lowering cost for working families who are facing rising prices at the grocery store and the gas pump. In addition to today’s bill, we have an opportunity to cut taxes for working families and seniors, send a $500 rebate to families across the state, and suspend the sales tax on gas to lower prices at the pump. Let’s work together to offer Michiganders real relief right now.”   

 

Filling Labor Shortages 

 

House Bill 4232 helps small businesses fill labor shortages in restaurants by expanding the eligible workforce to allow 17-year-old waitstaff to sell and serve alcohol at restaurants and other businesses. The individual must have completed a server training program as required by the Liquor Control Commission. During the individual’s shift, the on-premises licensee is required to have supervisory personnel that is at least 18 years old and has also completed a server training program. 

 

“Bars and restaurants throughout Michigan that have been struggling with employment issues applaud the governor for signing this bill into law,” said MLBA Executive Director Scott Ellis. “While this is a big win for our entire industry, I know our businesses in northern Michigan and other tourist areas will benefit tremendously from the signing of this bill.” 

 

HB 4232 was sponsored by Rep. Michele Hoitenga, R-Manton, and a copy can be found here 

 

Expanding Business Opportunities 

 

House Bills 5983 and 5984 allow the consumption of food and beverages in public swimming pools, and the service of alcohol in public swimming pools under certain circumstances. Together, the bills cut restrictions and create entrepreneurial opportunities that allow public pool operators to maximize business heading into a Pure Michigan summer.  

 

“The Bavarian Inn Zehnder Family applauds Governor Whitmer and the Legislators for approving the swim up bar legislation,” said Michael Keller Zehnder, Bavarian Inn Lodge. “This will enable hospitality business operators the opportunity to provide a new experience for their guests which will boost the Michigan Tourism Industry” 

 

“Offering unique experiences for families and visitors in a safe, well-regulated manner is an important goal as we look toward the future of Michigan’s hospitality industry,” said Rep. John Cherry, D-Flint. I’m proud to work with my colleagues to offer these new opportunities for economic expansion, giving a boost to mid-Michigan businesses.” 

 

HB 5983 was sponsored by Rep. Rodney Wakeman, R-Frankenmuth, and a copy can be found here.

HB 5984 was sponsored by Rep. John Cherry, D-Flint, and a copy can be found here 

 

Health and Safety 

 

HB 4527 increases safety requirements on owners or operators of carnival or amusement rides. It also establishes sanctions for bad actors who violate safety provisions within the Carnival Amusement Act. 

“These reforms have been in the works for several years, and I am glad these changes to make carnival rides safer across Michigan are getting signed into state law, said Rep. Thomas Albert, R-Lowell. “We are emphasizing safety and training to provide some peace of mind for people as they attend carnivals and fairs.” 

 

HB 4527 was sponsored by Rep. Thomas Albert, R-Lowell and a copy can be found here.  

 

HB 5875 extends the sunset date of a provision that limits a county’s maintenance of effort rate for Medicaid funded long-term care services. This will streamline Medicaid operations to save counties money. 

 

HB 5875 was sponsored by Rep. Bronna Kahle, R-Adrian, and a copy can be found here. 

 

Election Law 

 

HB 5258 amends the Michigan Election Law to change the timetable for filing, processing and distributing proof ballots for elections. 

 

“HB 5258 saves taxpayer dollars while easing communication between clerks and candidates,” said State Representative Matt Koleszar, D-Plymouth. “It’s a common sense solution that is a win for everyone.” 

 

HB 5258 is sponsored by Rep. Matt Koleszar, D-Plymouth, and a copy can be found here. 

 

Employer Taxes 

 

HB 5555 helps ease the up-front unemployment insurance tax burden of seasonal small businesses of 100 or fewer employees by allowing first-quarter payments to be spread out throughout the year.  

 

HB 5555 was sponsored by Rep. Sue Allor, R-Wolverine, and a copy can be found here. 

 

Local Government  

 

SB 821 allows emergency authorities to purchase real or personal property under an installment purchase agreement and allows emergency authorities to issue bonds or notes. 

 

“This legislation opens the door to offer a new and more cost-efficient option for cities, townships, and villages to equip their EMS authorities and provide care to area residents,” said State Senator Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City. “Installment purchase agreements have been available for other local entities to purchase real or personal property, and now emergency services will be able to take advantage of this more effective financing option.” 

 

SB 821 was sponsored by Sen. Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City, and a copy can be found here.  

 

HB 5386 allows the option for township boards to allocate costs of private road improvements equally among the property owners benefiting from the maintenance or improvement of the road.  

 

HB 5386 was sponsored by Rep. Sue Allor, R-Wolverine, and a copy can be found here. 

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