TitleBytes News & Happenings

State of the State, and then some …

Feb 19, 2020

By Patti Tremblay, Michigan Legislative Consultants

Over the last few weeks Lansing has been full of activity. As I write this, I have watched three major presentations in the span of ten days. The Governor gave her State of the State speech, the State of the Union response, and the state budget presentation.

The Governor used her State of the State to lay out her priorities for the year. These include improving education and skills for Michigan’s children, protecting families and public health, and cleaning up Michigan’s water. She also used her State of the State speech to practice for her State of the Union response. Governor Whitmer gave the Democratic response to the President of the United States State of Union speech. Many of the topics the Governor touched on during the State of the Union response echoed her State of the State speech but did not directly touch on the President’s speech. While the Governor’s State of the State speech produced partisan criticism, her State of the Union response received wide bi-partisan support around Lansing. Many Michigan elected officials liked how the Governor represented Michigan and publicly commented to such.

Additionally, the Governor presented her annual proposed budget. Many of the policy issues she highlighted in her State of the State speech received increased or new funding in her proposed budget. It appears that revenues are up for fiscal year 20/21. The Governor’s budget totals $61.9 billion, up 3.9 percent from current fiscal year 2020 budget. The General Fund budget totals $11.0 billion, up 5.8 percent (due to baseline increases and one-time investments). Finally, the School Aid budget: $15.9 billion, up 4.9 percent.

Now that the Governor has presented her budget, the Legislature has started to craft its own version of the budget. For the next seven weeks, the Legislature will hear testimony about the state budget. Dozens of subcommittees will be meeting weekly to hear from programs from around the state. The Legislature is expected to produce its first proposed budget around the first week of April. Serious negotiations with the Governor will start once the first budget is produced by the Legislature. Finally, we should see a budget in early to mid-summer with the deadline for the final budget being July 1, 2020.

On a much more micro level, House Bill 5260 has been on the House Local Government Committee agenda twice in recent weeks. House Bill 5260 would amend the Marketable Title Act to prohibit the act from being used to bar the enforcement of any provision contained in or referred to in a recorded master deed for a condominium and its recorded amendments. The sponsor, Representative Paquette, has stated that he would like this bill to be limited in scope and just address this perceived condo issue. MLTA is watching this bill closely to make sure the bill does not expand to include other sections of the Act.

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