Dear Neighbor,

Here is some information that I hope you will find helpful, including updates and news from your state government.

Gov. Whitmer Signs Bills Banning Child Marriage with More Legislation to Come

Gov. Whitmer recently signed six of 10 bills in the package to ban child marriage in Michigan. Michigan law currently allows 16- and 17-year-old children to marry with permission from a parent or guardian, and children younger than 16 can marry with both parental and judicial approval. For the last three terms, state Sen. Sarah Anthony and I have been leading the charge to ban child marriage in Michigan.

Specifically, the recently signed bills would:

  • Senate Bill 209Prohibit the marriage of an individual under 18 years of age and voids any marriage entered into by an individual under 18 years of age.
  • Senate Bill 212Remove a provision in the Estates and Protected Individuals Code allowing a guardian to consent to a minor’s marriage.
  • Senate Bill 213Remove a provision specifying that a minor is emancipated upon marriage.
  • Senate Bill 216: Amend the Safe Families for Children Act by prohibiting a parent from authorizing consent to the marriage of a child who is under 18-years-old.
  • House Bill 4299Prohibit the use of a marriage license as proof of emancipation.
  • House Bill 4300Allow a parent or guardian to apply for an annulment of a marriage if one of the parties was under the age of legal consent even if the parties had freely cohabited as husband and wife after reaching the legal age of consent.

The four remaining bills in the package (House Bills 429442954296 and 4302) are awaiting a final vote in the House of Representatives, which is expected this fall. This package is tie-barred, which means that these bills will not go into effect until all of the bills are signed by the governor.

This is the furthest these bills have gotten through the legislative process, and I am confident that they will all make it to the finish line this term.

Gov. Whitmer Signs Legislation to Improve Access to Food

Gov. Whitmer recently signed Senate Bill 35, which eliminates the asset test for SNAP benefits. By removing this requirement, Michigan joins 36 other states, increasing access to food assistance and lowering costs for residents. This legislation will help more than 700,000 Michigan households that currently receive SNAP benefits according to the Michigan League for Public Policy. Of those households, more than 530,000 children will benefit.

  Coffee & Conversation with Rep. Hope

Join me for a Coffee & Conversation event on Monday, July 17, from 4-5 p.m. at the South Lansing Capital Area District Library, 3500 S. Cedar St. in Lansing. Send an email to with any questions or topics you would like covered. See you there!


Kara Hope

State Representative