Proposal 1 Aims to Reform Term Limits and Create Financial Disclosure
While the state waited for the Michigan Supreme Court to ultimately approve two ballot proposals, the high court already had cleared the way for a third Wednesday.
Proposal 1, is an initiative that will reform the term limit set up in Michigan and create a financial disclosure policy it never had.
They may not seem related but they are two topics voters will decide on as a package deal, term limits and financial disclosure for state officials.
“Interestingly enough, those two provisions are in the same section of the state constitution that applies to the legislation,” said Studley.
The term limits aspect gets the attention. Right now lawmakers can serve 14 years, six in the State House and eight in the Michigan Senate. This plan cuts it to 12 total.
“But it would give people the flexibility to serve all or part of that in either chamber,” said Studley.
This is expected to help slow the revolving door in state politics but avoid career politicians.
“We’re seeing a Speaker sometimes get elected in their last term,” said Studley, “By the time they learn how to be a good legislative leader, they’re out of office.”
The other side of the Prop is financial disclosure.
“Michigan is one of the two states in the country that has no public financial disclosure requirements,” said Studley, the other being Idaho.
This includes the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State and legislators.
“You’d have to report assets, liabilities, income sources, future employment agreements, gifts, travel reimbursement, any position held in organizations, except religious and social,” said Studley.
The idea is to boost transparency but opponents say this will discourage good potential lawmakers from running, to avoid giving up personal info.
“We’re confident that individuals seeking office will find it to be reasonable,” said Studley, “And groups that are involved in the legislative process will be able to recruit candidates to serve our state.”