Wendzel License-Fee Reimbursement Legislation Clears Committee

Having successfully argued that job providers and individuals who paid business licensing fees to the state of Michigan while being forced to shutdown their businesses during the pandemic should be entitled to reimbursement of some form, State Rep. Pauline Wendzel has seen her proposed legislation to accomplish that clear the House Regulatory Reform Committee today with unanimous support.

Under Wendzel’s plan, a wide variety of occupations may seek prorated fee reimbursements if a business was closed because of a state mandate and suffered a financial loss in 2020. Reimbursements could be sought for healthcare licenses, skilled trade licenses, foodservice and liquor licenses, and numerous other occupational licenses.

Wendzel says, “I hope the bipartisan spirit around this package continues as it moves to the floor,” and adds, “I’m glad the committee recognized it was fundamentally wrong how state government treated its license holders, and I’m confident we can use this opportunity to help our impacted small businesses.”

Reimbursements would be prorated. For example, if a business was shut down for three months or 25-percent of the year, the license holder could seek reimbursement of 25-percent of the associated fee. A license holder paying $120 for an annual license in this example would instead be required to pay $90. The other $30 – if already paid – would be reimbursed through a credit when renewing their license for 2021.

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Rep. Wendzel’s legislation – House Bill 4557 – deals specifically with Liquor License fee reimbursements. Other members on Rep. Wendzel’s package and their bills include:

  • Rep. Annette Glenn – Public Health licenses…
  • Rep. Andrew Fink – Occupational licenses…
  • Rep. Beth Griffin – Skilled Trade licenses…
  • Rep. John Roth – Food Establishment fees.

In the photo accompanying this story on Moody on the Market, State Representatives Beth Griffin, Pauline Wendzel, and Annette Glenn testify in support of Rep. Wendzel’s licensing package.