Council of State Solicitors welcomes new member and rejects petition


A petition to cap service charges on payday loans will not officially appear on the November ballot.

The Michigan Board of State Solicitors denied certification of the petition on Thursday after learning that the campaign had failed to collect enough valid signatures to get past voters.

Michigan Chief Electoral Officer Jonathan Brater said the group initially sued to count some of the signatures found to be invalid in a review.

“Even if all of the signatures that they think should be turned over were counted, it wouldn’t affect the projection here in terms of validity just because they ended up being short by a considerable margin,” Brater told the board. administration.

The campaign did not challenge the Elections Office’s final findings. Earlier this weekhe said he would now focus on getting his proposal through the state legislature.

The board also heard an update on the status of two proposed constitutional amendments. One would protect access to abortion while the other aims to expand access to voting. Supporters of each say they have turned in more than enough signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Deciding whether campaigns have provided enough valid signatures first involves checking submitted sheets for obvious errors.

Then election staff number them and find a random sample to inspect further – and give opponents a chance to challenge.

Brater said he hopes that happens for both campaigns over the next two weeks.

“The total number of signatures between the two is around one and a half million, so that’s a lot of signatures and sheets to go through,” he said.

The Board of State Solicitors will ultimately decide whether the proposed changes are eligible for a ballot at a meeting scheduled for Aug. 31.

Before that, the council plans to meet on August 15 to certify the results of the upcoming primary elections.

This will be the second time the board has met under new chairman Tony Daunt. He took over from former Speaker Norm Shinkle when Shinkle resigned last month to campaign for the state House of Representatives.

The governor has named Grand Rapids technology businessman Rich Houskamp to fill the vacancy left by Shinkle on the board of directors earlier this week. Houskamp said he found out he had been nominated for the job when he returned from Chicago.

Thursday was the first time the Republican was part of the group.

Houskamp said he hoped to bring unity to his meetings – which sometimes got heated.

“I really, really believe that we have to come back to – we have to come back to a point of view where people can be in opposite parties, but they can also work together and they can work together for a common goal, for a common good. To me, that’s what the country is built on,” Houskamp said.

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