September 11 - 17, 2006
Volume 4 Issue 37

In the Capitol
Committee meetings of interest for the week of 9/18
9/19 Joint Select Committee on Economic Growth
Agenda: A presentation by Gregory Burkart from Squire, Sanders & Dempsey and Dan Foster from Silverlode Consulting on the site selection process and the importance of tax climate and incentives.

9/19 House Judiciary
Agenda: HB 6430 Prohibit access to social websites by certain sex offenders; HB 6431 Add crime of accessing social networking websites by certain sex offenders to sentencing guidelines.

9/20 House Judiciary
Agenda: HB 6403 Provide for personal protection order to prohibit certain conduct on or near school property or students; HB 6404 Authorize state police to serve and arrest violators of school zone personal protection order; HB 6405 Provide for jurisdiction over juvenile violations of school zone personal protection order;
HB 6406 Allow arrest without warrant for violation of school zone personal protection order; SB 701 Revise procedures for reports of missing endangered seniors in law enforcement information network (LEIN); HB 5252 Prohibit fleeing the scene of dog or wolf-dog cross bite incident or failing to provide assistance to bitten individual and provide penalties; HB 6348 Provide for confidentiality for disclosures to crime stoppers organizations; HB 6416 Allow payment of forfeited funds to certain nonprofit crime prevention entities under certain circumstances; HB 6365 Abolish rule of perpetuities; HB 6366 Delete reference to rule against perpetuities in probate law.

9/19 Senate Judiciary
Agenda: HB 6009 Increase penalties for third or subsequent drunk driving or drug driving conviction regardless of the number of years elapsed since prior conviction; SB 1241 Require maintenance of certain records of conviction for the life of the person; SB 1428 Allow defendants to attend drug treatment courts in other jurisdictions and revise mandatory requirements for drug treatment courts; SB 1404 Increase penalties for harassing, interfering with, or injuring law enforcement or search and rescue animal; SB 1405 Enact sentencing guidelines for certain crimes relating to search and rescue operations.

9/20 Senate Finance
Agenda: Discussion - Michigan Tax Tribunal

Complete Committee Meeting List

Legislation Recently Signed into Public Acts

Legislation Introduced 9/12 - 9/14
Of Interest to the Legal Community
HB 6452 Family law; parenting time; electronic visitation; allow. Amends sec. 7a of 1970 PA 91 (MCL 722.27a).

HB 6521 Criminal procedure; jurisdiction; venue for prosecution of certain identity-theft-related crimes; clarify.

HB 6522 Consumer protection; privacy; information privacy and protection act; create.

HB 6532 Criminal procedure; records; criminal conviction overturned based on DNA evidence; provide for deletion of record.

SB 1428 Courts; other; drug treatment courts; allow defendants to attend drug treatment courts in other jurisdictions and revise mandatory requirements for drug treatment courts. Amends secs. 1060 & 1062 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.1060 & 600.1062).

Of General Interest
A package of bills addressing election and voter issues was introduced in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. To view the bills online, visit the Michigan Legislature’s homepage and search for HB 6482–HB 6506, HB 6509–HB 6512, SB 1431–SB 1447, and SB 6509–SB 6512.

HJR BB Elections; other; process for amending the state constitution; revise.

HB 6480 Labor; fair employment practices; employer monitoring of employee communications; prohibit unless the employer establishes an employee monitoring policy and discloses that policy to employees.

HB 6514 Criminal procedure; evidence; additional blood or urine sample to be taken and preserved for later chemical testing if demanded within 15 minutes of initial chemical test; provide for.

In the Hall of Justice
Supreme Court Teams with State Bar of Michigan, MGTV, and WBFH-FM on Constitution Day Resource; Podcast Available

Rule Amendments
2004-42 - Amendment of Rule 8.110 of the Michigan Court Rules
The amendments modify the reporting requirements for the Delay in Criminal Proceedings Report to reflect the 100 percent disposition periods incorporated in Administrative Order No. 2003-7, to make the reporting quarterly instead of monthly, and to eliminate the need to give a reason for the delay.
Issued: September 12, 2006
Effective: September 12, 2006
Comment period expires: January 1, 2007
Public Hearing: To be scheduled

At the Bar
Kimberly M. Cahill is 72nd State Bar President

SBM Member Benefits Expand to Include PMRC Lending Library and ABA Book Discounts

FOCUS: The Board of Commissioners met on Wednesday, September 13, 2006. The following public policy positions were adopted by the State Bar of Michigan:

2006-07 - Proposed Amendment of Rule 7.211 of the Michigan Court Rules
The May 24, 2006 proposed amendments reflect the recommendations of Michigan Court of Appeals. The proposed amendments would extend the time to answer certain motions from 7 to 14 days, and would establish a new category of motions that can be decided in less than 7 days without delaying submission until the answer period has expired. The Court of Appeals believes that the resulting categories are distinguishable by the perceived likelihood that opposing counsel will seek to answer the motion, by the complexity of the answer that would likely be drafted, and by the Court of Appeals interest in quickly resolving such motions.
POSITION: Support

2006-08 - Proposed Amendment of Rule 7.211 of the Michigan Court Rules
The June 20, 2006 proposed amendments of MCR 7.211 reflect the recommendations of the Michigan Court of Appeals. The proposed amendments would reduce from 56 days to 28 days the deadline for submission of a motion to withdraw as appointed counsel in an appeal from an order terminating parental rights. The 56-day deadline would be retained for all other appeals. According to the Court of Appeals, if the proposed amendment is approved, the time before submission that is allotted to the party to file an answer to the motion will be equivalent to the time provided to that same party to draft the appellant’s brief on appeal. The Court of Appeals therefore believes that shortening the time allotted in cases involving termination of parental rights would be consistent with the truncated time line that is otherwise applied to those cases. The Court of Appeals also believes that the review function of the Court of Appeals staff is a good safeguard against frivolous motions to withdraw cases where answers are not filed.
POSITION: Authorize the Justice Initiatives Committee to advocate its position.

HB 5933 (Hummel) Administrative procedure; contested cases; requirement of written record; clarify. Amends sec. 74 of 1969 PA 306 (MCL 24.274).
POSITION: Support in Principle provided that changes offered by the Administrative Law Section are adopted.

HB 6100 (Van Regenmorter) Civil procedure; costs and fees; compliance fee; allow court to assess for penalty, fee, or costs not paid by date specified. Amends sec. 4803 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.4803).
POSITION: Oppose in Principle

HB 6304 (Mayes) Consumer protection; unfair trade practices; limitation on award of attorney fee in action under Michigan consumer protection act; eliminate. Amends sec. 10 of 1976 PA 449 (MCL 445.360).
POSITION: Active Support

SB 1266 (Bishop) Occupations; notaries public; eligibility for licensed attorneys to serve as notaries public; provide for. Amends secs. 11, 13, 15, 27 & 29 of 2003 PA 238 (MCL 55.271 et seq.).
POSITION: Support in Principle

SB 1272 (Van Woerkom) Probate; guardians and conservators; criminal background checks; require for guardians and conservators of vulnerable adults or children. Amends 1998 PA 386 (MCL 700.1101 - 700.8102) by adding sec. 5106a.
POSITION: Oppose in Principle

SB 1316 (Sanborn) Courts; juries; jury summons; require to clearly explain conditions for exemption from jury service. Amends sec. 133 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.1332).
SB 1317 (Bishop) Courts; juries; exemption from jury service for individuals who have served within the preceding 24 months; provide for. Amends sec. 1307a of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.1307a).
SB 1318 (George) Courts; juries; submission of written questions to witnesses by jurors; allow. Amends 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.101 - 600.9947) by adding sec. 2170.
SB 1319 (George) Courts; juries; discussion among jurors before trial concludes; allow under certain circumstances. Amends 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.101 - 600.9947) by adding sec. 1350c.
SB 1320 (George) Courts; juries; penalties for failure to appear or complete jury duty; provide for. Amends sec. 1332 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.1332).
SB 1323 (George) Courts; juries; peremptory challenges when selecting jurors; eliminate. Amends 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.101 - 600.9947) by adding sec. 1350b & repeals secs. 12 & 13, ch. VIII & sec. 17, ch XIV of 1927 PA 175 (MCL 768.12, 768.13 & 774.17).
POSITION: Oppose in Principle. The proposed changes are within the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. The legislation is a breach of the separation of powers.

SB 1321 (George) Civil procedure; costs and fees; separate filing fee for each defendant named in a lawsuit; require. Amends secs. 2529 & 8371 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.2529 & 600.8371).
POSITION: Oppose in Principle. The requirement of additional fees would limit access to the court system and therefore to justice for those of limited means.

SB 1348 (Garcia) Courts; state court administration; authority for magistrates to oversee arraignments; allow. Amends secs. 8511 & 8513 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.8511 & 600.8513).
POSITION: Support in Principle

For more information regarding these positions, please contact Elizabeth Lyon at elyon@mail.michbar.org or (517) 346-6325.

Sections and Committees
The Administrative Law Section submitted a public policy report stating its opposition to HB 5936 Administrative procedure; hearings; appeal and judicial review of certain decisions; revise procedures and include finding on regulatory impact of certain decisions. Amends secs. 28, 81, 85, 86 & 106 of 1969 PA 306 (MCL 24.228 et seq.) & adds sec. 107.

The Appellate Practice Section submitted a public policy report stating its support for 2006-07 - Proposed Amendment of Rule 7.211 of the Michigan Court Rules.

Federal News
Chief Justice Roberts on Constitution Day
(Washington Post, 9/18/06)

High Court to Post Same-Day Transcripts
(Washington Post, 9/15/06)

House Votes To Disclose Earmarks
(Washington Post, 9/15/06)

Ruling allows ID at Arizona polls
(Washington Times, 9/12/06)

State News
Senate Rejects Granholm Appointees
(Lansing State Journal, 9/14/06)

Links of Interest
Public Policy Resource Center | Michigan Supreme Court | Michigan Legislature | MCL Search Engines