Payday Lending, Voting In Michigan, ballot initiatives are making progress.

Ballot drives to increase voting options, limit payday loans, and restructure Michigan’s voters initiative process cleared the state elections board on Friday, allowing organizers to begin collecting thousands upon thousands of signatures to Ipass same day deposit qualify for the 2022 election.

The canvassers gave their approval for summaries to be placed on top of five petitions which will be distributed to the general public.

Extension of early voting 

Promote The Vote aims to extend early voting to more than a week, allow all voters to obtain an absentee ballot for subsequent elections, and make return envelopes that require prepaid postage. Its constitutional amendment would prevent attempts to “unreasonably” limit the freedom to vote and enshrine the board’s responsibility to verify outcomes after Donald Trump’s extraordinary attempt to overturn the election results.

Reducing interest rates 

Michiganders for Fair Lending is working to reduce the interest rates charged by payday lenders on loans that must be repaid within two weeks. The ballot committee, like Promote the Vote, seems to have the financial resources necessary to widely distribute petitions.

Proposed constitutional amendments

Two proposed amendments to the constitution endorsed by MI Right to Vote are also moving forward. One resembles the Promote the Vote initiative. The other would give voters enough time to collect signatures for ballot drives, permit voter referendums on spending laws, and make it impossible for the Legislature to enact bills even without the governor’s signature. Initiatives would instead be submitted to voters, as are constitutional amendments.

The summary of a petition to legalize the possession and production of hallucinogenic mushrooms was also approved by canvassers.

Overall, canvassers have authorized summaries for a dozen active ballot initiatives in 2022, including measures to increase the minimum wage, restrict the duration of urgent pandemic limits without parliamentary loan permission, and entrench abortion rights in the state constitution.

“We’re looking forward to communicating directly with Michigan residents about our suggested common-sense voting changes,” said Khalilah Spencer, president of Promote the Vote, which effectively led a 2018 amendment to the constitution that expanded absentee voting and enabled same-day registration.

The proposal would preserve voters’ ability to sign an affidavit if they do not have a photo ID. It will also allow the clerks to review absentee voters’ signatures to verify identity.

Secure MI Vote, a Republican-affiliated group, wants to debt require more information on absentee ballot applications. These include the last 4 digits of a Social Security number or the duplicate of a voter’s photo ID. Voters without an ID will need to verify their identity later for their vote to count. Promote the Vote’s initiative, said to spokeswoman Jamie Roe, is “unnecessary, expensive, and destructive to secure elections.