Whereas: To provide concerned citizens better access and closer contact to their legislators, it is desirable for legislators to spend more time in their district than in Lansing surrounded by professional lobbyists; and
Whereas: Michigan has one of the most costly legislatures in the country, with a base salary starting at $71,000.00 and going up from there, annual expense allotments of over $10,000.00 per legislator, and an annual office allotment of between $80,000.00 and $470,000.00 per legislator; and
Whereas: The second largest state in the Union, Texas, meets only once every two years, with a yearly salary of $7,200.00 and $21,000.00 per session Per Diem, and the third largest state in the Union, Florida, meets for 60 days per year with a salary of $29,687.00, and $7,860.00 per session Per Diem; and
Whereas: In 2013, there have been 1,812 bills introduced, 853 amendments, and 159 new laws passed; and
Whereas: No average citizen can effectively track and understand the volume of bills and changes made in our current system; and
Whereas: Monitoring the current state legislature requires constant year-round attention, and it is nearly impossible for citizens with a job and a family to accomplish this; and
Whereas: Restricting legislative action to a reduced and specific time frame will allow citizens to spend most of the year focusing on productive work and caring for family, while at the same time, giving them the opportunity to monitor what their legislators are doing.
Therefore: We demand that the Michigan Legislature pass a part-time legislature bill.