Group aiming to scrap Senate prepares petitions

7:53 AM, Jan 16, 2006   |    comments
The Capitol in Lansing.
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Unicameral Michigan's petition is the first item on the Board of State Canvassers agenda for its meeting at 9 a.m. Friday in the G. Mennen Williams Building, 525 W. Ottawa St. Public comments are allowed.

HASTINGS - A grass-roots effort to abolish the Michigan Senate will take a step forward this week when the organizers of Hastings-based Unicameral Michigan appear before the Board of State Canvassers. Joe Lukasiewicz said his group's proposed petition will be presented to the board Friday in Lansing. The board isn't expected to address the language in the eight-page petition. Instead, it will be asked to approve it "as to form," making sure the document is an appropriate size and readable. Meanwhile, Unicameral Michigan is about to launch the signature-gathering phase of its mission to eliminate the 38-member Senate. The registered campaign committee seeks to save money and duplication in the state government and make the Legislature more accountable to the public. The group has estimated the move would save the state $1 billion over 10 years. To get on the Nov. 7 ballot, the organization must submit 317,757 signatures from registered voters by July 17. Lukasiewicz said the question for voters is brief - the petition asks whether the state should abolish the Senate - but the rest of the petition document contains the specific references in the Michigan Constitution that would have to be deleted or altered. Contact Eric J. Greene of the Battle Creek Enquirer at (269) 966-0687 or egreene@battlecr. gannett.com.

By Eric J. Greene - Battle Creek Enquirer

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