- Citing ongoing manufactured delays, the Michigan House Democrats introduced legislation — which will be officially read in next legislative session — to abolish the Michigan Capitol Commission and return the Michigan State Capitol Historic Site under the exclusive control of the Legislative Council.
- This week, the Michigan Capitol Commission had yet another opportunity to exercise their authority to prohibit firearms from the Capitol Building. Once again, they have shirked their responsibility for the safety and well-being of the legislators and staff who work in the State Capitol building and the approximately 115,000 annual tour participants, including an estimated 85,000 school kids.
- While the Republican legislative leaders continue to prioritize property and money over the lives and safety of Michiganders and visitors who work, tour and visit our State Capitol building must be protected.
LANSING, Mich., Sept. 17, 2020, — Following the heartfelt testimony of Reps. Sarah Anthony (D-Lansing) and Brenda Carter (D-Pontiac) during the Michigan Capitol Commission meeting this week, Michigan House Democrats have introduced a legislative bill package — which will be officially read in during the next legislative session — to abolish the Michigan Capitol Commission in response to deliberate and continued delay tactics regarding the banning of firearms in the State Capitol building.
The Michigan Capitol Commission has avoided acting to prohibit firearms in the State Capitol citing an array of excuses and employing various stall tactics since 2018. It is imperative that the decision makers can be held democratically accountable.
As the Republican legislative leaders cancelled session today as an approved open carry event was hosted on the State Capitol grounds, it is evident they understand the implicit danger firearms present and have adjusted the legislative schedule for the direct benefit of their political agenda.
“As the Michigan Capitol Commission has shown a sustained and willful disregard to exercise their authority to protect the safety of everyone who works and visits our State Capitol building including thousands of school children each year, the Capitol Commission’s responsibilities must be returned to the Legislative Council,” said House Democratic Leader Christine Greig (D-Farmington Hills). “As my colleagues passionately testified earlier this week, it’s time for leadership and action rather than continued delay tactics. This is not just about property, fixtures and money. It’s about people’s lives.”
The five-bill package will be officially read in during the next legislative session and includes the following:
- HB 6246 (Greig) – Returns the Michigan State Capitol Historic Site under the exclusive control of the Legislative Council.
- HB 6247 (Hope) – Grants Legislative Council administrative power over the functions cited in the State Capitol Historic Society founding documents, including personnel and office expenses.
- HB 6248 (Rabhi) – Changes management and operation of the State Capitol Building & grounds to the Legislative Council (from commission).
- HB 6249 (B. Carter) – Changes responsibility of veteran recognitions to the Legislative Council (from commission).
- HB 6250 (Wittenberg) – Changes responsibility for producing an annual report on Capitol Building maintenance and project costs to the Legislative Council (from the commission).
“While we continue to address the real financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we must also prioritize the safety of our State Capitol for all who work and visit,” Greig continued. “Placing lives at risk is too heavy a price, when we have the means, responsibility and opportunity to address this critical issue and ensure our legislative duties and democracy are safeguarded from armed intimidation.”
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