Kalamazoo College's Student Newspaper
By Jennifer Wendel Op-Ed Editor
There are six statewide proposals on the Michigan ballot this year. Below is a breif summary of each along with general information on voting in Kalamazoo.
Endorsed by the Michigan Republican Party and Governor Rick Snyder, Prop 1 builds on Public Act 72 passed in 2011. It would allow the state to select an emergency manager who would have final say in financial decisions for state government, as well as the ability to expand into local government. It would act on units of government in Michigan that are in threat of bankruptcy.
Endorsed by the Michigan Democratic Party and the Michigan PTA, Prop 2 would allow public and private employees to organize themselves to be able to collectively bargain labor contracts and allow for all previous measures passed against collective bargaining to be undone. It would also cement this right in the state’s constitution.
Endorsed by the Michigan Environmental Council and the Sierra Club SE Michigan Group, this proposal seeks to increase Michigan’s commitment to renewable energy. Prop 3 would require that 25 percent of Michigan’s energy must come from renewable sources by 2025.
Endorsed by the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition and the Michigan Nurses Association, Prop 4 would give limited collective bargaining rights to home health care workers, and it would establish a Michigan Quality Home Care Council in the Michigan constitution. It would provide more training and background checks for home health care workers and financial aid for those who need in-home care.
Prop 5 would require a two-thirds majority vote in the State House and Senate, or a statewide vote in November before Michigan passes new or more taxes on citizens. It limits the ways Michigan can fund all tax-supported institutions, like education, roads, and social institutions, to those endorsed by a super-majority.
Endorsed mainly by the owner of the Ambassador bridge that connects Detroit and Windsor, Prop 6 would require a statewide vote before Michigan builds new international bridges or tunnels for vehicles.
Alison Geist, director of the Service Institute on campus, and the rest of the Service Institute have registered over 200 new voters on campus as a part of their K Vote campaign. They will also offer shuttles to the polling center for students who need a ride. The shuttles will run every 15 minutes from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and will meet in the parking lot by Dow Science Center.
Geist said it is hard to know how long voting will take because there might be lines, but she expects about 20 minutes round trip. There will be extra drivers during the busiest part of the day.
Some important things to note: the shuttle is only going to the Douglas polling place, which excludes students who live in the Vine neighborhood. Be sure to look up your polling place and check your voter registration at Michigan.gov/vote.
Geist also said to be sure to bring a valid ID, preferably a driver’s license with your K address, or a student ID, to prove you live in Kalamazoo.