News & Notices

Public Policy Report February 2024

 

Michigan Bar Journal

 

AT THE CAPITOL

HB 4738 (Breen) Criminal procedure: witnesses; Criminal procedure: discovery; Crimes: other; Criminal procedure: witnesses; confidentiality of certain information of a witness; require prosecuting attorney to maintain and provide for disclosure in certain circumstances. Amends 1927 PA 175 (MCL 760.1 - 777.69) by adding sec. 40b to ch. VII.

POSITION: Oppose. (Position adopted by roll-call vote. Commissioners voting in support: Bennett, Bryant, Burrell, Christenson, Clay, Cripps-Serra, Detzler, Easterly, Evans, Gant, Howlett, Larsen, Lerner, Low, Mansoor, Mantese, Mason, McGill, Newman, Nyamfukudza, Ohanesian, Perkins, Quick, Simpson, Washington. Commissioners voting in opposition: Hamameh, Murray, Reiser, Walton.)

HB 4739 (Mentzer) Crime victims: rights; Criminal procedure: discovery; Crime victims: rights; practice of redacting victim’s contact information; codify. Amends 1985 PA 87 (MCL 780.751 - 780.834) by adding sec. 8a.

POSITION: Oppose. (Position adopted by roll-call vote. Commissioners voting in support: Bennett, Bryant, Burrell, Christenson, Clay, Cripps-Serra, Detzler, Easterly, Evans, Gant, Howlett, Larsen, Lerner, Low, Mansoor, Mantese, Mason, McGill, Newman, Nyamfukudza, Ohanesian, Perkins, Quick, Simpson, Washington. Commissioners voting in opposition: Hamameh, Murray, Reiser, Walton.)

HB 5236 (Rheingans) Housing: landlord and tenants; Housing: landlord and tenants; form containing summary of tenant’s rights; require state court administrative office to provide. Amends 1978 PA 454 (MCL 554.631 - 554.641) by adding sec. 4a.

POSITION: Support HB 5236 with the following amendments:

(1) amend Section (1)(c) to read: “Contact information for the statewide self-help website, the statewide legal aid hotline, and the 2-1-1 system telephone number.”; and

(2) require landlords to serve the form on tenants with summons and complaint in eviction cases and provide enforcement remedies to tenants if landlords do not comply.

HB 5237 (Dievendorf) Civil procedure: defenses; Housing: landlord and tenants; Civil procedure: defenses; tenants right to counsel; provide for. Creates new act.

POSITION: Support HB 5237 with the following amendments:

(1) the program should be structured as a statewide program administered by MSHDA and the Michigan State Bar Foundation and coordinated with the current legal services delivery system;

(2) the program should provide informational and educational materials for both landlords and tenants but the program should not otherwise provide representation for landlords; and

(3) the program should include outreach and education to tenants and tenant-led community groups.

(Position adopted by roll-call vote. Commissioners voting in support: Bennett, Bryant, Burrell, Christenson, Clay, Cripps-Serra, Detzler, Easterly, Gant, Hamameh, Howlett, Larsen, Lerner, Low, Mansoor, Mantese, Mason, McGill, Murray, Newman, Nyamfukudza, Ohanesian, Perkins, Quick, Reiser, Simpson, Walton, Washington. Commissioners voting in opposition: Evans.)

HB 5326 (Aragona) Courts: district court; Courts: employees; Courts: district court; magistrate jurisdiction and duties; modify. Amends secs. 5735 & 8511 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.5735 & 600.8511).

POSITION: Support.

IN THE HALL OF JUSTICE

Proposed Amendments of Rules 702 and 804 of the Michigan Rules of Evidence (ADM File No. 2022-30) – Testimony by Expert Witnesses; Exceptions to the Rule Against Hearsay – When the Declarant is Unavailable as a Witness (See Michigan Bar Journal December 2023, p 58).

STATUS: Comment Period Expires 02/01/24; Public Hearing to be Scheduled.

POSITION: Support.

Proposed Amendments of Rule 9.131 of the Michigan Court Rules (ADM File No. 2022-45) – Investigation of Member or Employee of Board or Commission, or Relative of Member or Employee of Board of Commission; Investigation of Attorney Representing Respondent or Witness; Representation by Member or Employee of Board or Commission (See Michigan Bar Journal December 2023, p 59).

STATUS: Comment Period Expires 02/01/24; Public Hearing to be Scheduled.

POSITION: Support.