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Budget supplemental among bills earning governor's signature

Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011

LANSING, Mich. - Gov. Rick Snyder has signed a supplemental appropriation bill for the current budget year that includes continued funding for a program that encourages greater patient record security among Medicaid health care providers.

House Bill 5014, sponsored by state Rep. Chuck Moss, contains supplemental appropriations of $351.8 million gross and $169.4 million general fund for the departments of Community Health, Education, Human Resources and Treasury, as well as the Executive Office and Legislature.

The funding will help the state better serve its customers. For example, the Department of Community Health will use its $1.4 million general fund appropriation and $118 million in federal revenue to support the second year of the Medicaid Electronic Health Record Program. Under the program, Medicaid providers receive incentive payments to encourage the adoption and use of the electronic health record system to improve quality, increase efficiency and promote security.

Other examples include $200,000 for staffing and operational costs of the Governor's Council on Educator Effectiveness, which is charged with providing a report regarding a student growth and assessment tool as well as a state evaluation tool for teachers and school administrators; and appropriations that facilitate the transfers of the Child Development and Care Program and the Head Start Collaboration Office to the newly created Michigan Office of Great Start within the Department of Education.

H.B. 5014 is now Public Act 278 of 2011.

Other bills signed by the governor are:

- H.B. 5187, sponsored by state Rep. Brad Jacobsen. Under the bill, counties with a population of 50,000 or more will be prohibited from having more than 21 commissioners. Currently, only Oakland County - with 25 commissioners - will have to reduce the size of its board of commissioners. Kent, Macomb and Wayne counties, which could increase their commission members to 35, will now be capped at 21. Counties with populations of less than 50,000 will be permitted to maintain the same number of commissioners they have today.

Reducing the number of commissioners and support staff will save taxpayers an estimated $250,000 annually. It also ensures that certain large counties will have to follow the state model by which only elected officials redraw district boundaries. Current law employs unelected, political party operatives in the redistricting process. H.B. 5187 brings greater transparency to the process. The bill is now P.A. 280 of 2011.

- H.B. 4394, sponsored by Rep. Joseph Haveman, allows a continuing employer to request a redetermination of the weekly benefit amount and the number of weeks that benefits were payable, if the based period of an employee's claim included multiple employers. The bill is now P.A. 281 of 2011.

- H.B. 5147, sponsored by state Rep. Earl Poleski, removes the Jan. 1, 2012, sunset date that would require 45 percent of annual lottery sales revenue to be paid in prizes. Removal of the sunset will retain the current requirement that a minimum of 45 percent of the sales to be paid in prizes. The bill is now P.A. 279 of 2011.

Visit for more information on these bills.