Every day, the Michigan Chamber works to help members solve their business problems and prosper. While there is still work to be done this legislative session, we wanted to share some of our top legislative accomplishments this session.
- Repeal Health Insurance Tax - The Michigan Chamber successfully fought for passage of legislation repeal the costly and anti-competitive tax on health insurance claims, known as the Health Insurance Claims Assessment, or “HICA Tax." This tax served as a disincentive to purchasing health insurance, adding over $1.5 billion to the cost of health insurance coverage since 2011. The replacement tax, a new Insurance Provider Assessment (IPA), will cut health insurance taxes for employers and individuals and continue to fund Michigan’s traditional Medicaid program in a fair and stable way. Public Acts 173-75 of 2018.
- Address Michigan’s Talent Gap – The Michigan Chamber advocated for legislation focused on Michigan’s talent gap. The legislation creates opportunities for businesses and schools to collaborate to create a robust and diverse talent pipeline ready to fill the jobs coming back to our state. Public Acts 229, 235, 366 and 234 of 2018.
- Reform Unemployment Insurance System – The Michigan Chamber advocated for legislation to require the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency to get more aggressive on identity theft claims. The legislation works to block UI identity theft and the payment of fraudulent benefits and protects employers and innocent employees who are victims of identity theft. Public Acts 225-232 of 2017
- Strengthen and Improve DEQ Rulemaking – The Chamber fought for legislation to strengthen and improve administrative rulemaking at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). The legislation would expand openness, accountability and transparency at the DEQ and require stakeholder involvement earlier in the rulemaking process. Public Acts 267-69 of 2018.
- Expand Treasury's Settlement Authority - The Michigan Chamber successfully advocated for legislation that allows Treasury to settle tax disputes, meaning job providers will no longer have to spend significant time and money litigating cases and appeals. Public Act 215 of 2017.
- Protect Employer Interview Process – The Michigan Chamber advocated for legislation to prohibit local units of government from banning, via ordinance or regulation, the types of questions employers can ask prospective employees in the interview process. Public Act 84 of 2018.
- Establish Work Requirements for Medicaid Recipients – The Michigan Chamber successfully advocated for legislation to promote independence among the Medicaid expansion population by requiring them to find work or engage in job training or educational opportunities as a condition of receiving benefits. The Chamber believes Medicaid work requirements, modeled after what has been required under the Unemployment Insurance system since the 1930s, could help employers with their labor shortages. Estimates suggest over half of healthy adults on Medicaid are not working. Public Act 208 of 2018.
- Preempt Adoption of Local Excise Tax on Food and Drinks - The Michigan Chamber strongly advocated for legislation to stop local units of government from taxing prepared foods (e.g., soda pop, candy bars and foods served at restaurants). This change puts employers on a level playing field and eases the administrative burdens on businesses while holding down the price of grocery items for consumers. Public Act 135 of 2017.
- Limit the Liability of Solvent Companies in Asbestos Litigation – Going toe to toe with plaintiffs’ attorneys, the Michigan Chamber fought for legislation to discourage fraud and prevent abusive double dipping in asbestos litigation. Public Act 100 of 2018.
- Clarify Donor Rules – The Chamber advocated for changes to campaign finance laws to stop the threat of “gotcha” penalties and fines. The legislation also provides a regulatory framework for SuperPACs in Michigan so everyone understands what is required and how the state will implement the law. Public Act 119 of 2017.
In the 2019-2020 legislative session, we will continue to deliver powerful advocacy on behalf of members. Please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn regular updates on legislative issues that impact your business.