LANSING, Mich. Feb. 16, 2022 — Yesterday, House Bill 4173 unanimously passed the House Judiciary Committee. This bill would remove the cap on the maximum amount a county can offer as a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of wanted suspects or escapees from jail or prison. Under the current law, PA 175 of 1927, the maximum amount a county can offer is capped at $2,000.

“The amount of money that counties are able to provide as a reward has not changed in nearly 100 years. Higher reward amounts could lead to better information and getting dangerous people off the streets,” said bill sponsor state Rep. Kara Hope (D-Holt). “It’s past time that we give counties this tool to encourage reluctant witnesses to come forward.” 

This bill has been introduced in three previous sessions, twice by Hope’s predecessor state Rep. Tom Cochran (D-Mason) and once by Hope. HB 4173 has the support of the Michigan Sheriffs Association, the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan and the Michigan Association of Counties. It now awaits a vote on the House floor.