Senate Republicans announce fall agenda

LANSING — Legislation to help spur job growth is at the top of the Senate Republican fall agenda unveiled recently, said Sen. Jack Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township.

The agenda has four goals: spurring job creation, strengthening education, protecting the rights of citizens and continuing government reform.

“The Senate Republican fall agenda is about jobs,” Brandenburg said. “The only way we’re going to turn things around in our state and get Michigan’s economy back on the path to prosperity is to help job providers. I support this ambitious agenda and look forward to tackling it in the coming months.”

To help spur job creation, the Senate will take up measures to:

  • Reform the state’s personal property tax, which discourages business investment and expansion;
  • Streamline the regulatory process to cut through bureaucratic red tape; and
  • Rebuild our roads and bridges in order to improve access to all areas in Michigan.

The Senate also plans to make government more accountable, clarify the current medical marijuana law, pass legislation to protect seniors, reform insurance, and end lifetime benefits for legislators.

Action has already been taken on a package of bills to restore the American dream by increasing penalties for those who prey upon homeowners in vulnerable financial situations.

Legislature approves partial birth abortion ban

LANSING — Partial birth abortions would be outlawed under legislation approved by both the Michigan Senate and House of Representatives, said Sen. Jack Brandenburg.

Senate Bills 160 and 161, which would ban partial birth abortions, currently await the governor’s signature.

“Life is sacred and should be protected,” said Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township. “Partial birth abortion is a grisly act that should not be performed in Michigan. I am proud to support these vital measures.”

Senate Bill 160 would outlaw the practice of partial birth abortion in Michigan, unless determined necessary to save the life of the mother. The bill was modeled after the federal Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003, which was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The other measure, SB 161, would establish sentencing guidelines for performing or assisting in a partial birth abortion. Individuals convicted of the new felony would face two years in prison.

The proposed laws would empower local police departments, county prosecutors, and the Michigan attorney general to enforce this law.

According to Brandenburg, enacting a state ban is vitally necessary because the FBI and U.S. attorneys in charge of enforcing federal law do not have the resources to spend on enforcing the federal partial birth abortion ban.

“I look forward to these life-preserving measures being signed into law,” Brandenburg said. “Every life, no matter how small, is precious.”