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Whitmer signs bill prohibiting water shutoffs

Whitmer signs bill prohibiting water shutoffs

LANSING, Mich. — Governor Whitmer signed several bills into law Tuesday, including one that prohibits water shutoffs.

Senate Bill 241, creating the Water Shutoff Restoration Act, promotes access to clean water and protects Michiganders from the spread of COVID-19 by ensuring that every occupied residence has access to clean running water so that they can regularly hand-wash consistent with CDC guidance. The bill prohibits water shutoffs due to nonpayment and mandates that water services be restored to residences where shutoffs have occurred, in most circumstances, through March 31, 2021. This bill was sponsored by Senator Stephanie Chang, D-Detroit.

“Every Michigander deserves access to clean water, especially during a global pandemic,” said Governor Whitmer. “This legislation, spearheaded by Senator Stephanie Chang, will help ensure every Michigander can wash their hands and give their child a glass of water at the dinner table. My administration will continue working to ensure clean water for all Michiganders, and I look forward to partnering with everyone who wants to get this done.”

“I am beyond thrilled that Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bill 241 today and am grateful for her leadership and the bipartisan support from my colleagues”, said Senator Chang. “During this pandemic, access to clean water is more important than ever to ensure that Michiganders in big cities, suburban towns, and small villages across our state can have water to drink and wash their hands. So many Michigan families are struggling, and with COVID-19 still raging, we need to ensure that we are protecting Michigan families’ health and economic security. I will be eternally grateful to the advocates who have pushed for change for more than a decade.”

Senate Bill 1246 amends the Open Meetings Act to allow public bodies to meet electronically and remain in compliance. It also extends current remote attendance provisions to March 31, 2021. Once public bodies are again able to meet in-person, the bill requires compliance with social distancing and cleaning guidelines if they choose to hold in-person meetings. This bill was sponsored by Senator Lana Theis, R-Brighton.

Senate Bill 1234 amends the General Property Tax Act to adjust the procedures for obtaining a poverty exemption and, in certain cases, allows for extensions of the exemption without the need to reapply. This bill was sponsored by Senator Jim Runestad, R-White Lake.

Senate Bills 676 and 1137 amend the General Property Tax Act to establish a process for a former property owner to claim surplus proceeds from the sale or transfer of property, in accordance with the Michigan Supreme Courts recent ruling in Rafaeli LLC v. Oakland County. These bills were sponsored by Peter Lucido, R-Shelby Township and Jim Runestad, R-White Lake.

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