LANSING, Mich. – The Latest on the Michigan Legislature’s “lame-duck” session that ends in two weeks (all times local):
Michigan lawmakers have advanced contentious legislation that would change the procedure for voters who don’t show photo identification at their polling place.
Voters without an ID currently must sign an affidavit before voting. Under the bill approved Thursday by the Republican-led House Elections Committee, they could vote but would have to visit the local clerk’s office no later than 10 days after the election to ensure their ballot is counted.
They would have to present a photo ID with their current address or other documentation establishing their residency, or sign an affidavit attesting to an inability to obtain an ID.
House Elections Chairwoman Lisa Posthumus Lyon says the bills are based on an Indiana law that was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court. Democrats say Republicans are trying to suppress the vote.
Efforts to rid Michigan communities of plastic shopping bags would be banned under legislation headed to Gov. Rick Snyder.
The Republican-controlled House approved the bill on a mostly party-line 62-46 vote Thursday. The measure won Senate passage in May.
The bill would prohibit local governments from regulating, prohibiting or imposing a fee on the use or sale of “auxiliary containers” — which are defined as reusable or single-use bags, cups, bottles or other packaging from stores and restaurants.
More than 150 municipalities across the country have banned the environmentally unfriendly plastic bags or charged a fee.
None are in Michigan, though at least two counties — Washtenaw and Muskegon — have considered whether to limit the bags.
Democrats said the state should not strip local communities of decision-making.
The Michigan Senate has approved legislation that a lawmaker says would bring Uber and other ride-hailing services “into legal compliance” in a state without statewide regulations for the companies.
The bills, which were passed overwhelmingly Thursday, signal a compromise among the ride-hailing, taxi and limo industries.
They would create a statewide framework to regulate Uber and other transportation network companies, overriding agreements struck with local governments.
Republican Sen. Tory Rocca of Sterling Heights says statewide rules will create a “level playing field,” noting that taxi and limo companies have paid fees that Uber is not paying. Drivers would have to undergo annual background checks, and companies would have to review applicants’ driving history.
The House is expected to send the bills to Gov. Rick Snyder in coming weeks.