Senate approves Nofs bill to allow colleges and universities to obtain a liquor license

LANSING— The Michigan Senate on Thursday unanimously approved legislation sponsored by Sen. Mike Nofs to allow community colleges and universities with culinary or hospitality programs to apply for an on-premises liquor license.

“This is a great positive step toward preparing Michigan students and future entrepreneurs for success in business,” said Nofs, R-Battle Creek. “Under this reform, community colleges and universities would be able to offer students a broader experience into what the hospitality industry entails. I am proud that we were able to work with all interested parties to reach an agreement on an issue that has been around for more than a decade.”

Senate Bill 502 would allow the Liquor Control Commission to issue non-quota on-premises liquor licenses to community colleges and universities that operate accredited culinary or hospitality programs.

Nofs’ legislation requires that:

  • licenses are granted and registered to the program’s specific location;
  • culinary or hospitality programs must be accredited by a regionally-recognized body;
  • licenses must be used by the community college or university and not by a private entity;
  • institutions may not obtain a catering permit using these licenses; and
  • licenses are only used for activities to further the institution’s community and academic mission.

“This reform is about increasing educational opportunities and not about infringing on the private sector,” Nofs said. “That is why we narrowly tailored the measure so that colleges are not competing with private sector businesses.”

SB 502 was supported by many groups, including Jackson Community College and the Michigan Community College Association. It now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Nofs’ personal property tax reform key part of Senate Republican fall agenda

LANSING— The Michigan Senate Republicans today unveiled their fall agenda with reforming the state’s personal property tax highlighted as a key focus.

“Job creation remains our top priority. We have already enacted important reforms to improve our business climate and make Michigan more attractive to job providers,” said Sen. Mike Nofs, R-Battle Creek. “The personal property tax is a disincentive for companies to invest in new equipment and technology, which is why it must be reformed.”

Nofs introduced Senate Bill 34 earlier this year to start the conversation on phasing out the personal property tax. Among items currently taxed as personal property are: commercial equipment, furniture, industrial machinery and certain agriculture equipment and produce.

“Michigan is the only remaining state in the region that taxes job providers in this way, which puts us at a competitive disadvantage in attracting investment and jobs to our state,” Nofs said. “By removing this barrier Michigan companies can better compete, grow their business and create jobs; and more out-of-state job providers will consider Michigan to invest.”

The Senate Republican agenda has four goals: spurring job creation, strengthening education, protecting the rights of citizens and continuing government reform. Senate plans include streamlining the regulatory process to cut through bureaucratic red tape, and rebuilding Michigan’s roads and bridges in order to improve access to all areas in the state. 

Senate proposals would also make government more accountable, clarify the medical marijuana law, protect seniors, reform insurance and end lifetime benefits for legislators. 

Action has already been taken on legislation to restore the American dream by increasing penalties for those who prey upon financially vulnerable homeowners and the Senate today passed Senate Bills 160 and 161 to ban partial birth abortions and establish the procedure as a felony in state law.

Senate Republican 2011 Fall Agenda

Spur Job Growth

  • Reform Personal Property Tax
  • Cut Through the Red Tape for Business Growth
  • Rebuild Our Roads and Bridges

Strengthen Education

  • Increase Education Options
  • Empower Parents

Protect the Rights of Citizens

  • Clarify Medical Marijuana
  • Ban Partial Birth Abortion
  • Senior Protection
  • Restore the American Dream


Continue Government Reforms

  • Make Government More Accountable
  • Insurance Reform
  • End Lifetime Benefits for Lawmakers