2003 Senate Bill 824

Senate Roll Call 554: Passed

To extend the Dec. 31, 2003 sunset of the Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) until Dec. 31, 2009, and expand the types of firms MEGA could grant benefits to. MEGA is authorized to grant tax credits to companies that promise (but are not required to guarantee) to create or retain a certain number of jobs. The bill would add a provision requiring the governor to appoint to the current eight-member MEGA board two members nominated by the Senate Majority Leader and the Speaker of the House, and essentially give these nominees veto power by requiring them to be in the majority of any actions taken by the board. The bill would also require that gubernatorial appointments to MEGA be subject to the advice and consent of the Senate. MEGA beneficiary firms would be required to make a good-faith effort to use Michigan-based suppliers and vendors when purchasing goods and services, and to disclose to the state the names of corporate officers, board members, and partners. Also under the bill, responses to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests would require approval of the full board, rather than just the director. However the board only meets monthly, and FOIA requires requests to be responded to within five days. Financial or proprietary information about MEGA beneficiary companies is exempt from disclosure under FOIA. The bill would eliminate MEGA's power to impose administrative rules on participating businesses, and contains language authorizing tax breaks targeted at a facility in Greenville owned by the ElectroLux company which employs 2,000 workers and is scheduled to close.

38 Yeas / 0 Nays
Republican (22 Yeas / 0 Nays)
Democrat (16 Yeas / 0 Nays)