Michigan House of Representatives
|Michigan House of Representatives|
|Term limits:||3 terms (6 years)|
|2013 session start:||January 9, 2013|
|Website:||Official House Page|
|House Speaker:||Jase Bolger, (R)|
|Majority Leader:||Jim Stamas, (R)|
|Minority leader:||Richard Hammel, (D)|
| Democratic Party (50) |
Republican Party (59)
|Length of term:||2 years|
|Authority:||Art IV, Michigan Constitution|
|Salary:||$71,685/year + expenses|
|Last Election:||November 6, 2012 (110 seats)|
|Next election:||November 4, 2014 (110 seats)|
|Redistricting:||Michigan legislature has control|
As of December 2013, Michigan is one of 24 Republican state government trifectas.
Article IV of the Michigan Constitution establishes when the Michigan Legislature, of which the House of Representatives is a part, is to be in session. Section 13 of Article IV states that the Legislature is to convene on the second Wednesday in January of each year. Section 13 gives the Legislature the power to determine its date of adjournment through concurrent resolution.
- See also: Dates of 2013 state legislative sessions
In 2013, the Legislature will be in session from January 9 through December 31 (estimated).
After a extremely divided lame-duck session in December 2012, lawmakers are expected to have a tamer session. Major issues include the regulatory structure of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, increased transportation funding, education reform, and pension changes.
- See also: Dates of 2012 state legislative sessions
In 2012, the House began the legislative session on January 11.
In 2011, the House was in session from January 12 through mid December. A specific date is yet to be decided by the Legislature.  The 348 calendar days that the Michigan Legislature is in session during 2011 is the longest legislative session in the country.
In the 2011 session, Michigan was a key battleground on corporate taxes. Governor Rick Snyder had made promises during his campaign to eliminate the “Michigan Business Tax,” which was costly and difficult to calculate. Governor Snyder delivered, replacing the tax with a flat 6 percent corporate income tax. The state will recover the $1.8 billion in lost business tax revenues with $1.5 billion in higher personal income tax revenues. Current Michigan law requires the state income tax to drop to 3.9 percent by 2015. Governor Snyder's measure keeps the income tax rate at its current 4.35 percent until January 1, 2013, when it will drop to 4.25 percent. During 2011, Michigan also became the first state in more than 50 years to cut state-level unemployment benefits. 
The Sunlight Foundation released an "Open Legislative Data Report Card" in March 2013. Michigan was given a grade of C in the report. The report card evaluated how adequate, complete and accessible legislative data is to the general public. A total of 10 states received an A -- Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Texas, Virginia and Washington.
The signature filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in these elections was May 12, 2012.
The following table details the 10 districts with the smallest margin of victory in the November 6 general election.
|2012 Margin of Victory, Alaska House of Representatives|
|District||Winner||Margin of Victory||Total Votes||Top Opponent|
|District 91||Collene Lamonte||0.8%||40,037||Holly Hughes|
|District 41||Martin Howrylak||0.9%||46,381||Mary Kerwin|
|District 23||Pat Somerville||1%||45,181||Tom Boritzki|
|District 63||James Bolger||1.7%||43,636||Bill Farmer|
|District 101||Ray Franz||2.1%||49,373||Allen O'Shea|
|District 25||Henry Yanez||2.9%||40,388||Sean Clark|
|District 110||Scott Dianda||3.2%||38,751||Matt Huuki|
|District 57||Nancy Jenkins||5%||40,285||Jim Berryman|
|District 103||Bruce Rendon||5.6%||44,140||Lon Johnson|
|District 52||Gretchen Driskell||6%||50,257||Mark Ouimet|
Elections for seats in the Michigan House of Representatives were held on November 2, 2010. The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in these elections was May 11, 2010, and the primary election day was on August 3, 2010.
In 2010, candidates running for state house raised a total of $17,146,452 in campaign contributions. The top 10 donors were: 
|2010 Donors, Michigan House of Representatives|
|Michigan House Democratic Fund||$2,999,067|
|House Republican Campaign Cmte of Michigan||$578,118|
|Michigan Education Association||$245,350|
|Michigan Auto Workers||$194,240|
|Michigan Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association||$184,882|
|Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan||$141,225|
|Michigan Farm Bureau||$139,250|
|Michigan Automobile Dealers Association||$138,675|
|Michigan Trial Lawyers Association||$130,650|
|Hammel Leadership Fund||$125,250|
Section 7 of Article 4 of the Michigan Constitution states, "Each senator and representative must be a citizen of the United States, at least 21 years of age, and an elector of the district he represents. The removal of his domicile from the district shall be deemed a vacation of the office. No person who has been convicted of subversion or who has within the preceding 20 years been convicted of a felony involving a breach of public trust shall be eligible for either house of the legislature."
| How Vacancies are filled in State Legislatures |
When conducting a special election, the election should be held whenever the next general election is scheduled. If the vacancy happens after the statewide primary election, the leaders of the respective party organizations in the district can submit a list of nominees that would be voted on by party leadership. The nominee must be voted on no later than 21 days after the vacancy occurred.
- See also: Redistricting in Michigan
The state legislature has the power to redraw district boundaries. Changes to the boundaries are made in the form of regular legislation, which means the maps are subject to the Governor's veto. In 2010, the House and the Senate organized redistricting committees to handle drafting the maps. As a result of the 2010 elections, both chamber's of Michigan's legislature and Michigan's governorship were controlled by Republicans.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Michigan's population fell from 9.94 million to 9.88 million between 2000 and 2010. Michigan's U.S. Congressional delegation decreased in size from 15 to 14 seats. A substantial population shift occurred from Detroit proper into the suburban areas.
The state legislature undertook a relatively private redistricting process. A Republican-proposed plan passed with bipartisan support after the House made some changes to the Senate plan. Governor Rick Snyder signed the plan, Senate Bill 498, into law on August 9, 2011.
A coalition of advocacy groups sued, alleging that the State House of Representatives plan was discriminatory. The plaintiffs asserted that up to 35 percent of all minority House members statewide could lose thier seats as a result of the plan, and that specific voting blocks were split, diluting their influence. A three-judge panel dismissed the suit.
- See also: Comparison of state legislative salaries
As of 2013, members of the Michigan Legislature are paid $71,685/year. Legislators can use up to $10,800/year for expenses.
- See also: Partisan composition of state houses
|Party||As of December 2013|
The Speaker of the House is the presiding officer of the body and is elected by its membership. The Speaker appoints the Speaker Pro Tempore and all committees. Other duties of the Speaker include preserving order and decorum and deciding points of order.
The Michigan House of Representatives has 19 standing committees:
- Criminal Justice
- Elections and Ethics
- Energy and Technology
- Families, Children, and Seniors
- Financial Liability Reform
- Financial Services
- Government Operations
- Health Policy
- Local Government
- Michigan Competitiveness
- Military and Veterans Affairs
- Natural Resources
- Regulatory Reform
- Tax Policy
- Transportation and Infrastructure
Partisan balance 1992-2013
From 1992-2013, the Republican Party was the majority in the Michigan State House of Representatives for 13 years while the Democrats were the majority for seven years. For the final three years of the study Michigan was under Republican trifectas.
Across the country, there were 577 Democratic and 483 Republican State Houses of Representatives from 1992 to 2013.
Over the course of the 22-year study, state governments became increasingly more partisan. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 of the 49 states with partisan legislatures had single-party trifectas and 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states have divided governments, while single-party trifectas held sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years studied.
- Official website of the Michigan House of Representatives
- Official list of the current members of the Michigan House of Representatives
- Locate All Michigan House Districts
- Michigan House Democratic Caucus
- Voting Records
- Michigan State House election results
- ↑ Population in 2010 of the American states
- ↑ Population in 2000 of the American states
- ↑ South Bend Tribune, "Michigan Legislature starts tamer two-year session today," January 9, 2013
- ↑ Michigan State Legislature Sessions Schedule
- ↑ South Carolina Policy Council "50 State Legislative Session Interactive Map," February 2011
- ↑ Stateline.org, States balance budgets with cuts, not taxes, June 15, 2011
- ↑ 2010 session dates for Michigan legislature
- ↑ Sunlight Foundation Ten Principles for Opening Up Government Information, accessed June 16, 2013
- ↑ Follow the Money: "Michigan House 2010 Campaign Contributions"
- ↑ Michigan Legislature "Michigan Election Law"(Referenced Statute 168.178, Michigan Compiled Laws)
- ↑ Michigan Legislature "Michigan Election Law"(Referenced Statute 168.634 (1)-(2), Michigan Compiled Laws)
- ↑ U.S. Census Bureau, "2010 Census: Michigan Profile, 2011
- ↑ The Hill "Longtime Dem Reps. Levin and Dingell could face redistricting danger" 22 Dec. 2010
- ↑ The Detroit News, "Black caucus preps for Michigan redistricting", March 25, 2011
- ↑ Livingston Daily, "Public could get early peek at district lines", May 18, 2011
- ↑ Huffington Post, "Michigan Redistricting Spurs Joint Lawsuit Alleging Discrimination," Michigan 8, 2011
- ↑ NPR, "Judges dismiss challenge to Michigan House redistricting," March 23, 2012
- ↑ NCSL.org, "2012 State Legislator Compensation and Per Diem Table," accessed March 18, 2013
- ↑ Standing Rules of the Michigan House of Representatives
- ↑ Michigan House Leadership
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