By David Fleet
Both Republican State House of Representive members Joe Graves (51st) and John Reilly (46th) completed the year with a 100-percent voting record, taking part in all 511 roll call votes during the 2017 legislative session. The data is from michiganvotes.org.
The 51st District includes Argentine, Atlas, Fenton, Flushing, Gaines townships, the Village of Goodrich and the cities of Linden and Fenton. In addition to Groveland, Holly and Rose townships in Oakland County. The 46th District includes Oxford, Orion, Oakland (partial) Addison, and Brandon townships.
Graves was first elected in 2012.
“While I know that everyone may not agree with all of my votes, I do take my responsibility as a state representative very seriously,” said Graves, regarding the perfect voting record. “I haven’t missed a vote in my time serving as a state representative. It is an honor and a privilege to represent the 51st house district and I look forward to keeping my perfect voting record in 2018.”
In addition to a perfect voting record for all roll call votes cast in the state House in 2017, Graves never missed any of the 3,935 roll-call votes since taking office in February 2012 – giving him a perfect voting record for a fifth consecutive year.
Key in 2018 for Graves was overhauling the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) which lacked clarity, integrity, and accountability.
“Recognizing this, I convened a 17-member work group that included stakeholders from both the employer and the claimant communities, subject matter experts and bipartisan legislators,” he said. “Together, we spent 900 work group hours, collaborating to find the best way forward for the UIA.”
An eight-bill package was developed in the work group that passed both the House and the Senate unanimously and was signed into law by Governor Snyder.
“I sponsored one of the bills in the package, HB 5165 creating a process for employers and individuals to file an affidavit that a particular claim is fraudulent.”
Graves anticipates legislation dealing with tax reform will be a focal point in 2018.
“I am hoping that an income tax cut, that was defeated in 2017, will be brought back up in 2018,” he said. “Michigan’s hard working taxpayers deserve it. I sponsored HB 4092, which would eliminate the pension tax. While this bill never gained traction last year, I am hoping that HB 4092 will see some movement this year. As Chair of the House Oversight Committee, my goal is to continue to hold state agencies and departments accountable to ensure our taxpayers receive the quality services they deserve.”
Like Graves, State Representive John Reilly also had a perfect voting record.
“All I can say about my voting record is thank God for keeping me in good health,” said Reilly. “I had perfect attendance in 2017.”
Reilly, was elected in the fall of 2016 and says his greatest accomplishment in 2017 was pension reform.
“Although the final bill was a Senate Bill which we can’t co-sponsor it was a joint effort of both chambers,” he said. “Most important legislation that I sponsored is probably energy choice for schools, which had a hearing last month and hopefully a floor vote this month.”
Reilly is uncertain what legislation will back on the floor for 2018 but, like Graves hopes the income tax cut returns.
“My major goals for 2018 is to freedom and choice in energy and help Michigan join the 14 states that have competitive energy markets and are enjoying lower electric costs because of it,” he said. “This would really improve Michigan’s manufacturing economy.”