SCHOOL BOARD ELECTION DATE S.B. 427 & H.B. 4005:
SUMMARY AS ENACTED
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Senate Bill 427 (as enacted) PUBLIC ACT 232 of 2011
House Bill 4005 (as enacted) <b>PUBLIC ACT 233 of 2011
Sponsor: Senator Patrick J. Colbeck (S.B. 427)
Representative Kurt Heise (H.B. 4005)
Senate Committee: Local Government and Elections
House Committee: Redistricting and Elections
Date Completed: 2-8-12
House Bill 4005 amended the Michigan Election Law to require school board elections to be held at the general election in November of even-numbered years.
Senate Bill 427 amended the Revised School Code to revise references to sections of the Michigan Election Law (reflecting the changes made by House Bill 4005).
The bills took effect on January 1, 2012, and were tie-barred.
House Bill 4005 is described below in further detail.
Previously, under the Michigan Election Law, except as otherwise provided, as of September 1, 2004, a school district had to hold its regular election for the office of school board member at the odd year general election (the election held on the November regular election date in an odd-numbered year).
If, on September 1, 2004, a school district held its regular election at other than the odd year general election, the school board could adopt a resolution choosing to hold its regular election on one of the following dates: the odd year May regular election date, the November regular election date in both even and odd years, or the May regular election date in both even and odd years. After December 31, 2004, if a school board adopted a resolution to hold its regular election on a date other than the odd year general election, it could adopt a resolution to change its regular election to the odd year general election, the general November election, the November regular election date in both even and odd years, or the odd year May regular election date.
Also, after December 31, 2009, a school board that held its regular election for school board member at the odd year general election could adopt a resolution to change its regular election to the general November election.
The bill deleted all of these provisions.
Beginning January 1, 2012, the bill requires a school district to hold its regular election for the office of school board member at the general November election (the election held on the November regular election date in an even-numbered year).
Previously, a school board member's term began on one of the following dates:
-- If elected at an election held on a November regular election date, January 1 immediately following the election.
-- If elected at an election held on a May regular election date, July 1 immediately following the election.
Under the bill, all members' terms will begin on January 1 immediately following the election.
MCL 380.4 et al. (S.B. 427)
168.302 et al. (H.B. 4005)
Legislative Analyst: Suzanne Lowe
The average cost per precinct for a stand-alone election is estimated at $2,000, which was estimated when the Secretary of State's office made reimbursements to local units of government for the costs of operating the last presidential primary. Each school district has differing numbers of precincts, but if the $2,000 average cost per precinct is multiplied by the number of precincts in each district, the statewide average cost of a stand-alone election is about $25,000 per school district. However, there are many school districts with only one precinct (and an estimated cost of $2,000), while the largest district (Detroit) has 529 precincts (with an estimated cost over $1.0 million to run a stand-alone election). These figures do not assume that a school district consolidates precincts for a stand-alone election, but they often do. To the extent school districts consolidate precincts, the costs decline.
The costs to a school district for running an election at the same time as an election already occurring for another local unit are fairly negligible. The only costs to a school district for "piggybacking" onto another local election are for the additional printing of school district-specific information on the ballot; therefore, these minimal costs will be the only costs to a school district when running a school board election during the even-year general November election, as provided under the bills.
According to recent data, a total of 52 school districts operated only an even-year November election, meaning the other 94% of districts will be required to change to the even-year November election under the legislation. (Since 110 districts operate an annual November election, these districts will see savings for the odd-year November elections that is no longer allowed.) An estimate of total local savings (summing up the estimated individual districts' savings) ranges between $7.0 million and $8.0 million over the life-cycle of elections (in other words, between the odd-year May, odd-year November, and even-year May elections).
Fiscal Analyst: Kathryn Summers
Analysis was prepared by nonpartisan Senate staff for use by the Senate in its deliberations and does not constitute an official statement of legislative intent. sb427&hb4005/1112