Michigan Supreme Court hears arguments on paid sick leave and minimum wage

Local News

Last year there were two ballot initiatives, one for raising the minimum wage and the other about earning paid sick time.

It got enough signatures to be put on the November ballot.

On September 5th, Lawmakers adopted the initiatives into law, which meant they would not be voted on by the people.

During a Lame Duck session, at the end of the year the Republican-led legislature made changes to those laws.

So a minimum wage increase up to $12, that would have taken effect by 2020; was put off until 2030.

If voters had approved the changes, the legislature would not have been able to alter them.

So, do Lawmakers have the authority to make changes to laws in the same year they passed?

And that’s what today’s hearing at the Supreme Court was about.

The Michigan Solicitor General calls the actions “unconstitutional.”

“When the legislature adopts it has to adopt in full and that being the full substance of what the people has put in those initiatives. If it was a clerical error quite frankly we wouldn’t be here. We are here because the legislature the will of the people and took away their right to get their voice to the ballot by quickly adopting something that could’ve went on the ballot and changing it 2 days after people could have voted on it.” said Michigan Solicitor General, Fadwa Hammoud.

Someone who represented the legislature in court says he thinks it went well on their end.

“When the court pressed them as to what the rule would be or what the remedy would be they all gave different answers. it’s because they were making things up, they don’t have any text in the constitution itself that they can ground any of those answers.” said Rep. John J. Bursch.

There is no set time when the Supreme Court will issue a decision.

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