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The Michigan Legislature is on recess, but work continues to find at least $2 billion to address a road funding plan. House Republicans have moved a budget premised on the idea that the 6-cent sales tax stop being collected on gasoline and a penny-for-penny gas tax or excise tax be installed in its place to collect close to $1 billion in road revenue. That would amount to about a 15-cent-per-gallon gas tax increase. Another idea is a 30-year $10 billion bond that would prefund the teacher retirement system and free up $1 billon in the School Aid Fund being diverted from classrooms to pensions. Four alternative road funding bills that would increase the 6 percent Corporate Income Tax another 2.5 percent, raise the fees on heavy trucks, and make a pension income exempt from the income tax have been introduced by House Democrats. Still basking in its 2018 passage of the independent redistricting commission amendment to the state constitution, the grass roots group Voters Not Politicians (VNP) is mulling over running a ballot proposal in 2020 or 2022 that would either extend or eliminate term limits. Sen. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor) has introduced legislation (SB 416) that would automatically clear misdemeanors involving low-level marijuana use and distribution from Michiganders’ records. The measure would allow some 235,000 people to have those records automatically expunged without having to go through the courts. Attorney General Dana Nessel has filed a lawsuit in Ingham County Circuit Court seeking to close the controversial pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac. She also filed a motion to dismiss Enbridge’s Court of Claims suit that seeks enforcement of agreements made at the end of former Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration that allows the company to build a 4.5 mile, $500 million tunnel under the Straits of Mackinac. In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to rule on partisan gerrymandering opining the issue presents political questions beyond the reach of the federal courts. Two gun-related bills (HBs 4200 and 4201) have been introduced that would reduce the penalty for license holders who conceal and carry in “no-carry” zones. Click here for the July 2019 Karoub Report for more details on these and other legislative issues.