Legislation watch
Mackinac Center for Public Policy
Capitol Building

2005 Senate Bill 522: Eliminate local government’s power to block pipelines

Public Act 103 of 2005

  1. Introduced by Sen. Michelle McManus (R) on May 19, 2005, to remove the authority of a city, village, or township to block utility lines and structures, including pipelines, within the right-of-way of a limited access highway and intersecting streets, if the project is approved by the Michigan Public Service Commission. The bill was introduced after the state Supreme Court found that the plain language of the current statute does not prohibit local governments from blocking such projects. That case involved the City of Lansing blocking a gasoline pipeline along Interstate 96. The court “invited” the legislature to revise this statute.
    • Referred to the Senate Transportation Committee on May 19, 2005.
      • Reported in the Senate on June 8, 2005, with the recommendation that the bill pass.
    • Amendment offered by Sen. Virg Bernero (D) on June 8, 2005, to tie-bar the bill to Senate Bills 562 and 563, which would allow local governments to collect "impact fees" from petroleum pipeline owners, and require that the Public Service Commission hold public hearings before allowing pipelines. The amendment failed by voice vote in the Senate on June 8, 2005.
    • Substitute offered by Sen. Virg Bernero (D) on June 8, 2005, to replace the previous version of the bill with one that would establish a "binding arbitration" system empowered to issue authoritative rulings when local governments seek to block utility infrastructure projects. The substitute failed by voice vote in the Senate on June 8, 2005.
  2. Passed 29 to 9 in the Senate on June 8, 2005.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  3. Received in the House on June 8, 2005.
    • Referred to the House Energy and Technology Committee on June 8, 2005.
      • Reported in the House on June 22, 2005, with the recommendation that an amendment requiring a pipeline company to reimburse the Department of Transportation for any expenses it incurs be adopted and that the bill then pass.
    • Amendment offered in the House on June 28, 2005, to require the pipeline company or other utility to repay any reasonable costs incurred by the state related to the project that are not covered by the permit fee. The amendment passed by voice vote in the House on June 28, 2005.
  4. Passed 60 to 46 in the House on June 28, 2005, to remove the authority of a city, village, or township to block utility lines and structures, including pipelines, within the right-of-way of a limited access highway and intersecting streets, if the project is approved by the Michigan Public Service Commission. The bill was introduced after the state Supreme Court found that the plain language of the current statute does not prohibit local governments from blocking such projects. That case involved the City of Lansing blocking a gasoline pipeline along Interstate 96. The court “invited” the legislature to revise this statute.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  5. Received in the Senate on June 30, 2005.
  6. Passed 31 to 6 in the Senate on June 30, 2005, to concur with the House-passed version of the bill.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  7. Signed by Gov. Jennifer Granholm on July 21, 2005.

Comments