Gov. Rick Snyder signs bill supporting job creation, collaboration between SmartZones

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

LANSING, Mich. – More municipalities statewide will have the opportunity to establish funding for satellite ‘SmartZones,’ which collaborate with technology entrepreneurs and early-stage research companies bringing economic growth to local communities.

Currently, Michigan has 16 SmartZones and three satellite SmartZones. The most well-known example is the Medical Mile in Grand Rapids.

“Increasing collaboration to draw new talent and innovation to local communities, specifically in the STEM fields, is a great strategy for creating sustainable jobs in Michigan,” Snyder said. “With a new satellite SmartZone in Holland, West Michigan can continue on its current path of outstanding economic growth.”

House Bill 4226, sponsored by state Rep. Daniela Garcia, allows a limited number of local authorities to use tax increment financing to finance public improvements to attract economic development projects. It is now Public Act 125 of 2015.

The governor today also signed SBs 165 and 166, sponsored by state Sens. Wayne Schmidt and Tom Casperson, respectively. The bills establish parameters for the use of “pedal pubs” in Michigan, allowing passengers to consume alcohol while on board, with the requirement that the operator is not under the influence of alcohol and has proof of liability insurance. Local municipalities would still be allowed to prohibit consumption of alcohol onboard pedal pubs at their discretion. The bills are now PAs 126 and 127.

Also gaining the governor’s signature today were HBs 4319 and 4320, both sponsored by state Rep. Aric Nesbitt.

The bills standardize language in current statute regarding stopping at certain railroad crossings for school buses, vehicles carrying passengers for hire, and vehicles carrying hazardous materials. They are now PAs 128 and 129. For more information on this and other legislation, visit