press release

News from Progress Michigan

Thursday, September 16, 2021 

Contact: Sam Inglot,, (616) 916-0574 

Complaint: DTE, Bellino and Shirkey Violated Campaign Finance and Lobby Acts

Progress Michigan files formal complaint over golf fees

MICHIGAN – Today, Progress Michigan filed complaints with the State Bureau of Elections against Senate Majority Leader Mike ShirkeyRep. Joe Bellino, DTE Energy Company PAC and DTE Energy for violating both the Michigan Campaign Finance Act and the Lobby Registration Act. 

The complaints center around donations from DTE to Shirkey and Bellino for golf outing fees. Bellino chairs the Energy subcommittee in the Michigan House, which directly oversees policy that impacts DTE. The following statement may be attributed to Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan:     

“DTE’s lack of investment in our power grid kept residents in the dark for days after recent storms—and they clearly hoped to keep people in the dark about their illegal gifts to Bellino and Shirkey as well. These donations are clearly gifts meant to lobby elected officials. The shameful and illegal sidestepping of Michigan’s lobby laws are exactly why we need lobbying reform in Michigan. We’re hopeful the Bureau of Elections will review these complaints and take swift and appropriate action against Bellino, Shirkey, DTE PAC and DTE. We encourage the Department of Attorney General to also review this information for possible civil and criminal enforcement as well.”