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No-go on air gun legislation, a new criminal justice commission, and no unions for college athletes

Jan 3, 2015

Michigan vs. Michigan State. The governor this week signed legislation forbidding athletes at Michigan's public universities from unionizing.
Credit User: Michigan State Spartans / facebook

This Week in Review, Jack Lessenberry and Rina Miller discuss Governor Rick Snyder’s air gun legislation veto, a new criminal justice commission, and legislation that forbids Michigan public university athletes from unionizing.


Air gun legislation

Governor Rick Snyder earlier this week vetoed legislation aimed at loosening air gun restrictions in Michigan.

The National Rifle Association-supported bills would’ve ended the state’s categorization of most pellet and air guns as firearms.

Lessenberry said the governor’s veto was based on a technicality, and the bills will likely get passed under the next Legislature

“There are a lot of people who think whether you have your eye shot out by a BB gun or a .22 is immaterial,” Lessenberry said.

Criminal justice commission

The governor is expected to approve a commission that will review Michigan’s criminal justice policies.

Advocates say the state could lessen its $2 billion per year corrections system bill by releasing elderly lifers who are no longer dangerous.

Lessenberry said he doubts the new commission will accomplish much.

“A lot of times when politicians don’t want to deal with an issue, they just appoint a commission to study it to death,” he said.

University athlete bill

It’s now illegal for athletes at public universities in Michigan to form unions.

Gov. Snyder signed the bill as a preemptive measure after football players at Northwestern University in Illinois voted to unionize last spring.  

Lessenberry said he hasn’t heard of any similar interest at Michigan schools.

“This [bill] is just another form of union bashing,” he said.

– Rebecca Kruth, Michigan Radio Newsroom