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Don't expect much action at state Capitol until lame duck

user cedarbenddrive

The state Legislature returns this week. But lawmakers will likely save big issues for after the election. 

“I wish I could tell ya that we were gonna solve road funding, tackle other big issues over the next few weeks,” said Senator Curtis Hertel, D-East Lansing. “I’ve seen no indication of that whatsoever, and I think a lot of stuff is going to hold off until lame duck.”

House and Senate spokespeople have confirmed that there won’t be much going on in their chambers this week. But there are some committees scheduled to tackle major issues.

The House Committee on Law and Justice plans to debate bills that would change the definition of a minor in criminal proceedings from under 17 to under 18 years old. Another committee will examine legislation about the Line 5 pipeline that runs under the Straits of Mackinac.

Speaker of the House Tom Leonard also has a one bill he’d like to get wrapped up.

The legislation is an attempt to keep Hemlock Semiconductor and its parent company Dow Chemical from leaving the state’s power grid.

“We’ve gotta get this situation wrapped up to ensure that Dow is going to be able to remain a vibrant and large employer here in the state of Michigan,” Leonard said.

That bill is currently in the Senate.

Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R