LANSING, Mich. May 11, 2023 — The House of Representatives passed House Bill 4033 today. This bill, introduced earlier this year by state Rep. Veronica Paiz (D-Harper Woods), would require the state to reimburse local units of government for the cost of conducting a special election to fill a vacancy for a state House or Senate seat. It will specifically apply to elections called by the governor and elections held on a date other than a scheduled election date.

“I am elated that this legislation passed today. It is truly unfair that local governments and tax-payers bear the burden financially for state-level special elections. I am glad I can drive positive momentum forward for local municipalities,” Paiz said. “These unexpected elections drain precious funds that should be used to support local communities.”

To qualify for special election reimbursement, a county, city or township would submit its costs to the Department of Treasury and Secretary of State to determine the costs that would be eligible for reimbursement. These reimbursements would not include the salaries of permanent local officials or the cost of reusable election supplies and equipment.

“While serving on the Harper Woods City Council, I learned of many of the challenges cities face when it comes to budgeting. That’s why this legislation is so meaningful to me and why I know the positive effect it can have on communities,” Paiz continued. “The impact of this bill will save local governments thousands of dollars. With this policy in place, taxpayer money can be used for more meaningful community needs, rather than paying for an unexpected election.”