Michigan House votes to make English the official language

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LANSING (WJRT) (2/22/2018) - The Michigan House voted on Thursday to approve legislation introduced by state Rep. Tom Barrett establishing English as the official state language.

Barrett, of Charlotte, said 32 other states have already made English the official language.

“This bill simply codifies the existing practice of requiring government bodies to perform official functions in English,” said Barrett. “It’s common sense.”

The bill also allows documents, publications or other services to be offered in other languages if necessary to comply with federal law or to best serve the health, welfare and safety of Michiganders.

“If the state or a local government chooses to continue offering documents or services in other languages, this bill does not prevent them from doing so,” Barrett said.

The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration. It would need approval there and a signature from Gov. Rick Snyder to be enacted.

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