Skubick: Lawmakers return to pocketbook and controversial issues

LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – State lawmakers after taking almost a one-month holiday break were back at the Capitol today looking at a new year agenda that includes lots of pocketbook and controversial issues.

One of those issues pits labor against legislative Republicans.

Michigan lawmakers are back for the new year but union members are also here. They are afraid Republicans will take away the prevailing wage and they don’t like it.

“It’s another attack on working people. They’re trying to bring down our wages and we’re not going to have it.”

Senate Republican leader Arlan Meekhof counters the mandatory paying of union wages on government construction jobs adds an automatic ten percent to the cost for local taxpayers.

“I want to save taxpayers money. That’s what I want to do,” said Sen. Meekhof.

Here’s what else they might do in this new year.

2018 Legislative Agenda
(1) Driver Fee Rebate
(2) Improve Mental Health
(3) Revisit No Fault Insurance

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan’s no fault plan went up in smoke last year because he wanted to give drivers a choice on how much car insurance they wanted.

Democrat Rep. Rim Greimel argues, if the mayor junks that, a deal could be reached.

“The hope is to forge a bipartisan coalition around the best parts of his plan and jettison some of those parts that don’t meet the muster in the legislature.”

On the tax front, the President’s tax cut turned out to be a $1.5 billion indirect tax hike in Michigan taxpayers and the governor wants to return that money.

But some are talking about using the money to slice the state income tax rate, too.

Democrats says its another tas break for the rich.

“I think its a terrible idea,” claims Sen. Jim Ananich. “Take the Trump tax increase and redistribute the wealth unevenly to the people of the state.”

Senate Republican leader Meekhof disagrees.

Let the games begin.

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