MI lawmaker proposes one-chamber Legislature

This April 16, 2015 photo shows the Michigan Capitol in Lansing, Mich.

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS/WOOD) — A state lawmaker is trying to change Michigan’s Constitution to fundamentally alter how the state Legislature operates and is elected.

Republican Rep. Jeff Yaroch of Richmond has introduced HJ 59, which is a joint resolution to eliminate the separate Michigan House and Senate to create a one-house Legislature.

Only Nebraska works under a unified system. Yaroch says now is the time to consider this type of reform.

“We don’t see any purpose for two houses,” he told our Lansing Nexstar sister station, WLNS.

“We can actually talk about real reform which would cut $50 million out of the budget,” he added.

The unified legislative body would be nonpartisan and candidates would be prevented from listing their political parties on the ballot.

Recently, Lt. Gov. Brian Calley proposed creating a part-time Michigan Legislature. Yaroch says since that idea is being considered, lawmakers should also think about changing it to a single chamber Legislature.

Back in 2015, this same idea was introduced, but opponents said a single-body concept would eliminate checks and balances in state government.

The joint resolution has been sent to the House Committee on Government Operations for review.


The original version of this story was first posted on wlns.com.