Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 1, 2021
Governor Whitmer Signs Bipartisan Legislation to Require Insurance to Cover Emergency Insulin Supply, Expand Access to College Scholarships
LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 155 and 156 to ensure access to emergency insulin supply at a cost affordable to all Michiganders. The governor also signed House Bills 4055 and 4056 to allow the Michigan Department of Treasury to use overall scholastic achievement to determine eligibility for competitive college scholarships instead of relying exclusively on the ACT and SAT. These bills acknowledge the challenges that many students have had in accessing standardized tests during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I am committed to bringing Republicans and Democrats together to make real, lasting change for Michigan families," said Governor Whitmer. "For people living with diabetes, access to insulin is a matter of life and death. I'm proud to sign Senate Bills 155 and 156 because they ensure access to an emergency insulin supply for people facing an interruption of care, and require insurance to cover that emergency supply. I'm also proud to sign House Bills 4055 and 4056 - students should be able to afford a college education based on their overall scholastic achievement, especially when facing unprecedented obstacles to taking otherwise required tests like the ACT and SAT. "
Senate Bills 155 allows pharmacists to dispense an emergency supply of insulin to individuals with an expired but otherwise valid prescription issued within the last 12 months. Senate Bill 156 requires insurance to cover an emergency supply of insulin when dispensed under the circumstances outlined in Senate Bill 155.
Senate Bill 155 and Senate Bill 156 were sponsored by Sen. Kevin Daley, R-Lum, and copies can be found here.
"I am happy to see this legislation reach the finish line and being formally signed into law," said Senator Daley, R-Lum. "Countless Michiganders need insulin to survive, and they should never be forced into a place where they can't get their lifesaving medication. My bills would establish a safety net for those who rely on this medication in their daily lives."
"AAPA and its member pharmacists fully support the bill," said Ed Saleh of the Arab American Pharmacist Association. "The bill provides access to lifesaving drugs to Michiganders most prone to experiencing emergency health crisis. A diabetic emergency can not wait till your doctor's office reopens on Monday morning."
"Your community pharmacist is the most accessible provider of healthcare," said Sammy Salem of the Arab American Pharmacist Association. "Allowing them to provide insulin when the patient needs it most saves Michigan healthcare costs and Michiganders' lives."
House Bill 4055 will amend 1964 PA 208, the state competitive scholarships act, to allow scholastic achievement as an alternative to achieving the requisite score on a standardized test (currently the SAT) for purposes of scholarship eligibility.
House Bill 4055 was sponsored by Rep. Sarah Anthony, D-Lansing, and a copy can be found here.
"I can't imagine trying to navigate applying for college and financial aid as a young adult in the midst of a global pandemic," said Rep. Sarah Anthony, D-Lansing. "Students should not be punished for impossible circumstances outside of their control. I'm proud of these bipartisan bills to lend some extra support to students who are working hard to achieve their educational and professional goals."
"The pandemic has created or exacerbated countless barriers for students pursuing postsecondary education, and HB 4055 directly addresses several testing and affordability obstacles," said Ryan Fewins-Bliss, Michigan College Access Network executive director. "We commend the commitment of Gov. Whitmer and bill sponsors Rep. Sarah Anthony and Rep. Scott VanSingel to increasing financial aid access and continuing the momentum toward meeting our state's Sixty by 30 goal. Equitable financial aid is an important step toward ensuring all students in Michigan - especially low-income students, first-generation college-going students, and students of color - have the opportunity to attend college."
House Bill 4056 will amend 1966 PA 313, the tuition grant act, to allow undergraduate students enrolled in private colleges and universities for the 2020 spring term and the 2020-21 academic year to have two extra semesters of eligibility for the grant.
House Bill 4056 was sponsored by Rep. Scott VanSingel, R-Grant, and a copy can be found here.
"I'm pleased to see this bi-partisan effort signed into law," said Rep. Scott VanSingel, R-Grant. "Our students have been through enough over the past year. These bills making the financial aid process more user-friendly are a great step in the right direction."
The governor also signed HB 4015, HB 4123, HB 4540, HB 4541, HB 4641, SB 256, and SB 438.
House Bill 4015 would amend the Michigan Consumer Protection Act to require that non-state entities providing online services similar to those performed by the state include on their websites conspicuous disclosures of the availability of state services and a prominent fee disclosure.
House Bill 4015 was sponsored by Rep. Sarah Lightner, R-Springport, and a copy can be found here.
House Bill 4123 allows the state to provide financial assistance for municipalities to improve their sewage, stormwater, and other water treatment through energy efficiency projects. It also requires municipalities pursuing other types of facility improvements to consider opportunities to incorporate energy efficiency upgrades.
House Bill 4123 was sponsored by Rep. Beth Griffin, R-Mattawan, and a copy can be found here.
House Bills 4540 and 4541 will bolster the operation of the Q-Line in Detroit by requiring motorists to keep streetcar tracks clear of obstacles and empowering transit police to enforce those requirements.
House Bill 4540 was sponsored by Rep. Tyrone Carter, D-Detroit, and a copy can be found here.
House Bill 4541 was sponsored by Rep. Graham Filler, R-DeWitt, and a copy can be found here.
"As chair of the House Judiciary Committee, I was proud to work on bipartisan legislation that will increase public safety in the city of Detroit," said Rep. Graham Filler, R-DeWitt. "These important bills will improve safety and efficiency on transit lines."
House Bill 4641 extends filing deadlines for property owners holding Neighborhood Enterprise Zone (NEZ) certificates for 180 days. NEZ tax abatements help property owners rehabilitate residential housing located within distressed communities
House Bill 4641 was sponsored by Rep. Steve Marino, R-Harrison Twp., and a copy can be found here.
"As a result of bipartisan collaboration in the Legislature and with the Administration, this is a win for our state's economy," said Rep. Steve Marino, R-Harrison Twp. "I look forward to additional partnerships that continue to bolster Michigan's economic future."
SB 256 is a budget implementation bill necessary for appropriation provisions for the Department of State in the FY 2020-21 Budget Act, 2020 PA 166.
Senate Bill 256 was sponsored by Sen. Roger Victory, R-Hudsonville, and a copy can be found here.
Senate Bill 438 would ensure that police officers in Michigan can take a person into custody after an arrest from operating a vehicle while intoxicated. The bill creates an exception from the general rule that people arrested for non-serious misdemeanors should be issued appearance tickets rather than taken into custody.
Senate Bill 438 was sponsored by Sen. Curtis Vanderwall, R-Ludington, and a copy can be found here.