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Saturday November 28th, 2020 5:54AM

The Latest: Snyder signs bill to require grades for schools

By The Associated Press

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Latest on Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder's action on lame-duck bills (all times local):

7:50 p.m.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed into law requirements that letter grades be issued for each public school in the state.

The new accountability system will begin in 2019 under the law enacted Friday.

The Republican governor, who leaves office next week, signed or vetoed scores of other bills Friday. He vetoed one that would have blocked any future attempts to force the disclosure of donors to nonprofits, including political groups whose sway has grown in elections.

He signed an environmental cleanup bill that Democrats say would make it harder to toughen the standard for protecting drinking water from certain toxic chemicals.

The law will require the state to use federal toxicity values when setting cleanup criteria for hazardous substances and take additional steps when upgrading standards. Republicans say it makes long-overdue updates to promote cleanup and reuse of abandoned industrial properties.

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6:30 p.m.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed a law making it harder for groups to put proposals on the statewide ballot and vetoed one that would have diluted the power of the incoming Democratic attorney general.

He also has signed a law requiring Democratic Gov.-elect Gretchen Whitmer's administration to better justify new regulations that are stricter than those mandated by the federal government.

The Republican's action on Friday came days before he leaves office and after a lame-duck dominated by GOP efforts to trim the power of newly elected Democratic state officeholders.

Republicans in Wisconsin enacted even more sweeping laws to curb newly elected Democrats.

One new Michigan law lets ballot drives count no more than 15 percent of their voter signatures from any one congressional district. A separate bid to strip the newly elected Democratic secretary of state's campaign-finance power stalled in the Legislature.

___

5:50 p.m.

Gov. Rick Snyder has vetoed bills that would have authorized online gambling in Michigan, including wagers placed on sports.

His decision Friday is blow to a gambling industry that hoped to make Michigan only the fifth state to allow online gambling.

The term-limited Republican wrote a letter to lawmakers saying the legislation merits more careful study, partly because "we simply don't have the data" to support the change at this time.

Snyder cites concerns about the impact on the lottery system, which helps fund schools. And he says he does not think it is appropriate to sign legislation that would have effectively resulted in more gambling, with a "reasonable chance" of the state losing revenue because internet gambling would have been taxed at a lower rate.

Snyder, who leaves office Tuesday, has also signed $1.3 billion budget legislation that shifts new tax revenue for schools to other priorities such as roads and environmental cleanup.

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5:20 p.m.

Michigan Republican Gov. Rick Snyder has vetoed legislation that would have made permanent a ban against Michigan doctors prescribing abortion-inducing drugs with webcams or other forms of telemedicine.

The veto issued Friday means Michigan's prohibition, enacted in 2012, will expire next week.

Snyder says patients should be able to remotely receive safe and proper care, including for a medical abortion, which is when drugs are used to end a pregnancy.

The bill was backed by majority Republicans in the Legislature and opposed by Democrats.

Snyder, who leaves office Tuesday, has also signed $1.3 billion budget legislation that shifts new tax revenue for schools to other priorities such as roads and environmental cleanup.

___

5 p.m.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed $1.3 billion budget legislation that shifts new tax revenue for schools to other priorities such as roads and environmental cleanup.

The school fund was due for a $174 million annual boost thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that enabled the state to collect taxes on more online purchases. But under the Republican-backed budget deal enacted Friday, the windfall is diverted to roads and a new fund to clean up toxic sites, manage waste and boost recycling.

Snyder, who leaves office Tuesday, approved the plan after lawmakers rejected his proposed hike in landfill-dumping fees.

The budget measures also spend more to address the emergence of pollution from man-made chemicals and to hire 175 additional child protective services workers following a scathing audit.

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