LANSING — Tonight a Democratic package of bills aimed at providing more transparency and accountability among individuals and organizations during the petition circulation process passed the House. In response, state Rep. Jeremy Moss (D-Southfield), who sponsored House Bills 4635, 5208 and 5209 in the package, issued the following statement:

“Ballot initiatives are one of the most important tools available to everyday Michiganders to make their voices heard. Yet as we saw with the underhanded tactics employed to gather signatures for the prevailing wage repeal initiative, some circulators doing the bidding of corporate CEOs will use deception as a tool get what they want. It’s despicable to tell someone that they’re signing a petition to ‘protect wages, benefits and pensions’ for teachers and construction workers when they were in fact doing the opposite. Michigan’s working families depend on prevailing wage to keep food on the table, and those circulators were able to — legally, at the time — manipulate voters into helping rob them of that stability. That’s absolutely unconscionable, and I’m glad we’re taking a stand for transparency and accountability today by ensuring no one is ever able to do that again. ”