Families and job creators need simple, fair, and easy-to-understand rules and regulations. Yet the state Senate may soon open the door to a maze of complicated mandates across Michigan. That’s the reality of a bill the Senate is poised to vote on. If it isn’t defeated, life will get more expensive, and jobs will disappear across our state.
The best way to describe Senate Bill 171 is a solution in search of a problem. Introduced with only partisan backing, the bill would give each of Michigan’s 1,800-plus units of local government the authority to enact their own rules and regulations governing private employers’ relationships with their employees. They could regulate everything from operations to hiring practices to wages and benefits to training and beyond. Yet there’s no need, since the state already has strong protections in place.
This policy would only create problems – massive ones. Local governments would have free rein to pass the most draconian mandates imaginable. That would result in a patchwork of confusing, complex, and costly rules. In short, this policy would create a nightmare of red tape that restricts both job creators and employees alike.
If this policy known as local preemption passes, job creators will find it all but impossible to keep track of every rule and regulation they have to follow. Their costs will soar, leaving far less money for new hires, wage increases, and expansion.
Small businesses will get hurt the most. They don’t have the administrative resources or staff needed to understand and comply with 1,800-plus conflicting rules, nor do they have the budgets to make sense of such madness. This policy is a guaranteed road to layoffs and even store closures on Main Street.
Our organization recently signed a coalition letter opposing SB 171. We join with a diverse group of stakeholders in warning that this policy will hurt Michigan’s growth – in our economy, in our population, and in our reputation as a great place to live and work.
The full Senate may vote on SB171 as soon as this week. Please call your Senator immediately and say: Don’t make Michigan a maze of job-killing mandates. Families and job creators need simplicity and fairness!