Voting Records Indicate Local Legislators Had Productive 2012
Plymouth and Canton legislators introduced many bills, missed few votes in 2012.
Local representatives for Plymouth and Canton had a productive year in Lansing, according to MichiganVotes.org, a voting records database published by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.
Dian Slavens, a Canton Democrat representing Michigan's 21st House District, introduced 27 bills or resolutions, including 14 that were passed by the House.
Among the proposed bills introduced by Slavens were House Bill 2907, which establishes procedures for replacing a county executive removed by the governor for misconduct and House Bill 5846, which would require officeholders who switch parties to refund campaign contributions made during the preceding year, with interest.
Slavens missed just one of the Michigan House's 914 votes in 2012, Senate Bill 1129, allowing local governments to borrow money to cover unfunded employee pension liabilities, if the local has closed its traditional “defined benefit” pension system to new employees. The bill was introduced in the Michigan Senate by Patrick Colbeck (R-Canton), passed the Senate and House and was signed into law by Gov. Rick Snyder.
Kurt Heise, a Plymouth Republican representing Michigan's 20th House District, introduced 19 bills in 2012, including five passed by the House.
Among the proposed bills introduced by Heise in 2012 were House Bill 6043, exempting 911 recordings from the Freedom of Information Act, House Bill 5823, which exempts public safety personnel from property tax if he or she serves in the municipality where they reside and House Bill 5431, which imposes up to four years in prison for making a false report to authorities of a medical emergency, and increased penalties if anyone is injured or killed responding to the false emergency, which Snyder signed into law.
Heise did not miss any votes in 2012.
Both Slavens and Heise won reelection in November and begin serving new terms in 2013.
Patrick Colbeck, a Canton Republican in the Michigan Senate, introduced 11 Senate bills in 2012, seven of which passed the Michigan Senate.
In addition to Senate Bill 1129, Colbeck also introduced Senate Bill 938, which prohibits the state, local governments, school districts or any government employer from using taxpayer resources (including their payroll processing systems) to deduct union dues or fees from employees’ pay, and then sending the money to a union.
Colbeck did not miss any votes in 2012.
Correction: Rep. Kurt Heise introduced 19 bills in 2012, not nine (typographical error), and the story now includes a clarification that Rep. Dian Slavens introduced a cumulative 27 bills and resolutions, 14 of which were passed by the House. An earlier version of this story characterized all these measures as bills.