- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 13, 2016

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The Latest on the Michigan Legislature’s final week of voting in the two-year term (all times local):

9:20 p.m.

Michigan lawmakers have adjourned for the day after about 11 hours in session, as talks continue on energy policy and changes to the state’s auto insurance system.

Legislators now have two days left in the two-year session. They voted Tuesday for higher speed limits on rural highways and to give schools more flexibility on “zero-tolerance” expulsion and suspension requirements.

But some major items, including a rewrite of 2008 energy laws, remain bottled up. Majority Republicans also have proposed a scaled-back plan to rein in medical costs for people seriously injured in car crashes.

The House and Senate will resume meeting on Wednesday and Thursday.

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7 p.m.

Michigan lawmakers are thinking twice about “zero-tolerance” policies used to expel or suspend students.

The state Senate unanimously approved legislation Tuesday that would require school officials to consider factors such as a student’s age, disciplinary history and whether his or her actions threatened the safety of others before they expel or suspend the student.

The new factors would not apply when a student is expelled for bringing a gun to school.

Supporters of the bills say there have too many incidents of children being expelled or suspended for bringing a butter knife to school or forgetting that their nail clippers had a small knife on them. They say the legislation would return “common sense” to school disciplinary procedures.

The House plans to send the bills to Gov. Rick Snyder soon.

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5:50 p.m.

Hunters in Michigan could wear pink instead of orange under a bill sent to Gov. Rick Snyder.

The state House approved the legislation 81-27 Tuesday.

It would require the Natural Resources Commission to review and determine if pink or any additional colors are effective and safe for people to wear while hunting. Currently, hunters must wear orange.

The commission would have to act by October 2017.

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2:10 p.m.

Pharmacists across Michigan could dispense, without a prescription, a drug that reverses the effects of an overdose under legislation going to Gov. Rick Snyder.

The state House unanimously approved the bill Tuesday.

The sponsor, Republican Rep. Anthony Forlini of Harrison Township, says the measure would help stem rising opioid overdose deaths. He says the bill would put the antidote in the hands of more people who might be present when someone overdoses.

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Corrects ‘president’ to ‘present’ in 3rd paragraph.

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1:50 p.m.

Legislation that would let Michigan motorists drive faster on 1,500 miles of rural highway is going to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk.

The state House voted 57-51 Tuesday to authorize a 75 mph speed limit on 600 miles of interstate and a 65 mph limit on 900 miles of US- or M-number highways. The limits would be raised if a safety study shows it is OK and the new limit is no more than what 15 percent of drivers surveyed already are exceeding.

Proponents say speed limits are too low in rural areas.

Snyder hasn’t commented much on the bills, saying his state police and transportation agencies have been tracking them.

The state police says it has no public safety concerns, while the Department of Transportation is neutral on the legislation.

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1 p.m.

The Republican-led Michigan Senate won’t vote this term on tougher voter ID requirements and bills that would make the governor and lawmakers subject to public-records requests.

Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof said Tuesday senators also won’t pass tougher fines for illegal mass picketing.

The voter ID and anti-strike bills were approved by the GOP-controlled House last week along mostly party lines.

The voting legislation would have changed the procedure for voters who don’t show photo identification at their polling place.

Voters without an ID currently sign an affidavit before voting. Under the bill, they could vote but would have to visit the local clerk’s office no later than 10 days after the election to ensure their ballot’s counted.

Democrats accused Republicans of voter suppression. Republicans said they’re protecting election integrity.


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