“Choose Life” License Plate
H.B. 4824 - Rep. Richard LeBlanc
S.B. 600 - Sen. Patrick Colbeck
No action was taken on S.B. 600 after it was reported from the Senate Transportation Committee, as Gov. Snyder indicated that he would not be approving any new specialty plates in the foreseeable future. Thus, the Choose Life plate "died" (both S.B. 600 & H.B. 4824) at the close of the session, as did numerous other specialty plate bills. Should the governor's position change during the 2012-13 session, a new bill would have to be introduced.
S.B. 600 was reported out of the Senate Transportation Committee on January 24, 2012 with a unanimous vote of 7-0. The bill now moves to the Senate floor. RLM expects a strong show of support when the full Senate votes on this measure in the coming weeks.
S.B. 600 was introduced on September 7, 2011. On January 17, 2012, the Senate Transportation Committee held a hearing on the bill for testimony only. RLM and Michigan Family Forum spoke in support of the bill, and Planned Parenthood spoke in opposition.
H.B. 4824 was introduced on June 28, 2011 and referred to the House Committee on Transportation.
These bills authorize the Secretary of State to issue a “Choose Life” fund-raising license plate. Michigan citizens would be able to purchase this specialty plate to support the prolife cause.
Funds generated by the sale of “Choose Life” plates in Michigan will be directed to the Choose Life Michigan fund. The board of the nonprofit prolife committee, Choose Life Michigan, will then disperse the money to organizations that submit grant proposals for specific abortion prevention projects. The bill stipulates that the funds will be used to promote alternatives to abortion, including adoption, provide practical support to pregnant women, and conduct outreach to at-risk populations regarding positive pregnancy options.
Currently, 25 states have successful “Choose Life” specialty license plate programs, with proceeds going to pregnancy resource centers and abortion alternatives such as adoption agencies. Nationwide, choose life plates have raised almost $15 million.
Various forms of this legislation have been introduced in the past. In the 2009-2010 session, Rep. Paul Scott introduced H.B. 5135 to create a “Choose Life” plate. The bill died in the Transportation Committee.