Who Deserves a Credit for Michigan Driver Reimbursements of $ 400?


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Lansing – Michigan House President Jason Wentworth, a leading Republican lawmaker, last week rebuffed the idea thatDemocratic Governor Gretchen Whitmerdeserved the $ 400 road refund credit for state drivers.

“Let’s not forget that in 19 the governor fought this every step of the way,” Wentworth told reporters on Wednesday of the auto insurance reform legislation Whitmer enacted in May 2019.

“The only reason this discount is being offered is that this house and the Senate voted on legislation that would require this discount to be given to drivers once it has been recognized as a saving,” added Wentworth, R-Farwell .

Although she initially disagreed with elements of the legislation, the Democratic governor was involved in the negotiations.

However, Wentworth said she was “forced” to sign the law.

The Republican leader’s comments foreshadow political debates ahead in 2022 as reimbursement checks are issued to drivers statewide in the second quarter of the year and Whitmer runs for a second term as Michigan governor .

Whitmer signed the historic flawless legislation on the front porch of the Grand Hotel at the 2019 Mackinac Policy Conference. She was surrounded by lawmakers from both parties.

“The people of this state don’t care if you’re a Republican or a Democrat,” Whitmer said at the time. “They just want us to fix the problems.”

The law ended the state’s unique requirement that motorists purchase auto insurance policies that guarantee uncapped lifetime medical benefits for serious injuries in an accident.

Reforms and higher than expected returns on investment helped the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association raise a $ 5 billion surplus. On November 1, 2021, Whitmer asked the MCCA to return the excess through “refund checks” to every resident with auto insurance.

The MCCA has agreed to distribute part of the surplus. And the association revealed plans to reimburse state drivers $ 400 per vehicle with upcoming checks in the second quarter of 2022 on Tuesday.

Democrats praised the move and the governor’s role in it. The Whitmer campaign sent out a press release with headlines on the refunds.

“The reimbursements are the result of the historic, bipartisan auto insurance reforms enacted by Governor Whitmer,” his campaign said.

The 2019 law provided for a mechanism by which a refund could take place, but Whitmer successfully urged the MCCA to increase the deadline.

Rinke adds Youngkin staff member

Republican Kevin Rinke, a Michigan businessman running for governor, has secured a key campaign post.

Rinke announced last week that Virginia Governor-elect Glenn YoungkinThe director of state and deputy political director, Marshall Moreau, will be his campaign director. Youngkin won a competitive race for governor of Virginia in November, toppling a post that had been held by Democrats.

“I am delighted that Marshall is joining our team and will help implement the same type of positive, problem-focused campaign that has shocked the world in Virginia,” Rinke said in a press release.

In addition to Moreau, Greta Pisarczyk, originally from Michigan and former director of finance at GOPAC, will join the Rinke campaign as director of finance.

“Monopoly Man” visits Lansing

Environmental activists and “Uncle Pennybags” from the board game Monopoly gathered in Lansing on Wednesday to call on the legislature to lift the state’s ceiling on rooftop solar power.

As of 2016, there is a 1% cap on the amount of solar power DTE Energy and Consumers Energy can purchase based on the average peak utility load over the past five years.

Ethan Petzold appears as Gaming Monopoly Uncle Pennybags outside the Michigan Capitol on Wednesday, December 8, 2021.

Activists said the state’s dominant utilities were using their power and influence to block legislation.

Ethan Petzold, Southeast Michigan regional coordinator for the Michigan League of Conservation Voters, was the person disguised as “Uncle Pennybags” or “Monopoly Man,” according to a press release.

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