LANSING, MI – Democrat State Representative, Joey Andrews, is the cosponsor of a bill package that would give the state the authority, through the Michigan Public Service Commission, to overrule local control on land use for solar and wind farms, according to MIRS News. While the legislation is problematic on its own, it is equally troubling that Andrews is the co-owner of Parasol Solar, a solar panel installation company he co-founded in 2015. On his LinkedIn, Andrews lists his previous role as “Managing Partner, Head of Legal”.
On Wednesday, the bill package passed through the House Committee on Energy, Communications, and Technology, where Andrews is the Majority Vice-Chair.
The connection raises questions about a conflict of interest as Michigan’s Democrat lawmakers are pushing policies that give greater control to out-of-touch state bureaucrats and removes control at the local level for solar and wind projects. Andrews insisted that the group is ‘inactive’, but has not committed to not reactivating the company.
This comes after The Detroit News reported that Democrat State Representative and House Appropriations Chair Angela Witwer failed to disclose any financial connections to her consulting firm, which lobbies lawmakers and has an active contract with the Michigan Department of Education.
“Not only is Representative Joey Andrews cosponsoring bills that would benefit his company but there is also no accountability for legislators that fail to disclose any financial or personal connections to policies or votes that may line their pockets”, said Mary Drabik, Communications Director for the Michigan Freedom Fund. “Democrats like Representatives Joey Andrews and Angela Witwer have used their positions of power to benefit them, creating an environment of winners in losers, where they are the winners and hardworking Michigan taxpayers are the losers. More than ever, Michiganders deserve the government transparency they voted for in 2022.”