I’m wishing everyone a safe and enjoyable Labor Day this weekend. Summer is winding down and autumn is approaching, which means cooler weather, football weekends, apple orchards opening soon and hunting season right around the corner. We had a great summer and I’m looking forward to an even more enjoyable autumn. Students across the district returned to school this week, so I’m wishing them all the best on a successful school year.
If you want to stay involved and up to date on what’s happening in Lansing and the district, there are a few different options available to you. You can visit the House website to view our weekly session meetings or any committee meetings you might be interested in. You can also stay updated by visiting my website at Cherry.housedems.com, following me on Facebook @StateRepCherry or following me on Twitter @JCherry4MI.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns, I hope you will reach out to me. You can email me at any time at JohnCherry@house.mi.gov or call my office at (517) 373-7515.
Justice for Flint
This week, state Sen. Jim Ananich and I introduced legislation that would extend the statute of limitations in criminal misconduct cases of public officials. House Bill 4834 and Senate Bill 462 would increase the window in which prosecutors can seek legal action against emergency managers, department leaders, local officials or any other public official who had a role in poisoning the residents of Flint, from within 6 years of the offense to within 10 years of the offense.
This legislation is necessary to ensure that the people of Flint have the opportunity for justice to be served and not cut short because the previous investigation was conducted irregularly and ineffectively. We need to ensure that investigators have the time needed to properly review the 99 percent of documents that were not turned over to prosecutors until this summer.
You can follow the progression of these bills by visiting http://legislature.mi.gov.
Currently, the Fiscal Year 2020 budget is still being negotiated. Despite the tight deadline, we remain hopeful a budget compromise can be reached before the new fiscal year begins on October 1. Some residents have asked me if our state government will shut down if a budget agreement cannot be reached. While I try to avoid making predictions, I do know that Gov. Whitmer and legislative leaders are on record saying they want to avoid a shutdown, even if it means passing monthly continuation budgets to keep state agencies operating at current funding levels until a final budget is passed.
The main sticking points appear to be:
(1) whether a new, sustainable source of funding for roads and other infrastructure will be included in the budget;
(2) how infrastructure spending might impact education funding, particularly K-12 education and the teachers’ pension system; and
(3) whether to fund the governor’s proposals aimed at monitoring and working to improve drinking water quality.
I will do my best to keep you posted as this dynamic situation continues to develop. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to contact my office with questions or concerns.
Town Hall on Elder Abuse
On Monday, Sept. 16, from 10 a.m. to noon, I am hosting a public town hall on Elder Abuse with special guest Attorney General Dana Nessel. The event will be held at the Krapohl Senior Center in Mount Morris. I will give a quick legislative update, then AG Nessel will give a presentation. Afterwards, there will be an open Q & A session where you can share your questions, concerns and ideas.
We’ll have ASL interpreters present, and the Krapohl Center is accessible. If you have any questions, please give my office a call at (517) 373-7515.
When: Monday, Sept. 16, from 10 a.m. to noon
Where: Krapohl Senior Center, 5473 Bicentennial Drive in Mt. Morris
Transportation Town Hall
I will be joining Rep. Sneller in his district as a special guest for his Transportation Town Hall to discuss legislative issues and answer questions from the community.
When: Monday, Sept. 23, from 5 – 8 p.m.
Where: Grand Blanc Senior Center, 12632 Pagels Drive in Grand Blanc
Conversations with Cherry
Have questions, comments or ideas to share? Join me at my in-district events. I’ll give a brief legislative update, then I’ll have time for any questions, comments or concerns you’d like to share. These events are family friendly and resources are available.
When: Friday, Sept. 13, from 11 a.m. – noon
Where: Carman-Ainsworth Senior Center, 2071 S. Graham Road in Flint Township
When: Friday, Sept. 27, from 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Where: Liberty Family Dining, 6277 W. Pierson Road in Flushing
Helpful Resources for the Folks in the 49th
Seeking Mental Health Services
Coping with stress or anxiety caused by your daily life? Genesee Health System offers a Mobile Mental Health Unit that travels around Genesee County to provide mental health services. So far, the mobile unit has connected 35,000 residents to mental health services. This service is free for adults and children.
United Way for Genesee County can offer help 24 hours a day by calling 2-1-1 or by visiting their website. They have information and resources on a variety of topics such as utility and rent payment assistance, job search and placement, food, health and child care, housing and temporary shelters, prescription expense assistance, school-related programs, free tax preparation and more. This is a great resource available to the residents of Genesee County.
Worried About Your Utility Bills?
It can be hard to make sure your bills are always caught up. But for those tough times, you do have options. The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW) is a non-profit organization that helps through partnerships with agencies across the state of Michigan to distribute utility assistance. THAW programs are open to income-eligible Michigan residents. Prior to seeking THAW assistance, you can also contact your utility provider to see what options may be available to you.
- DTE Energy – (800) 477-4747
- SEMCO Energy – (800) 624-2019
- Detroit Water & Sewerage Department – (313) 267-8000
- Consumers Energy – (800) 477-5050
- Michigan Gas Utilities – (800) 401-6402
Want to lower your bills and help save the environment? Check out THAW’s list of 30 no-cost tips to help you use less energy and reduce your energy costs.
Want to start recycling?
Much of the glass, metal, paper and plastic we use daily heads straight to the landfill, usually after a single use — but these items have not reached the end of their life cycle. Keep Genesee County Beautiful (KGCB) believes that conserving resources is important, and recycling is one way in which to do so. KGCB has become the “go-to” resource for recycling education in Genesee County and provides information on what can and cannot be recycled in curbside programs and how to prepare it.
Click here for a list of year-round locations that accept hazardous waste, electronic waste and items not permitted in curbside trash or as part of recycling collection.
City of Flint Residents – for information regarding curbside recycling services and guidelines from Republic Services, click here.
Need some help figuring out how to prepare your recycling? Click here for Recycling Bin Basics.
Late Night at the Flint Institute of Arts
Join the Flint Institute of Arts for “Late Night” with special drinks and fun events in the Palette Cafe along with gallery tours, meditation or yoga in the museum and art projects for kids and adults.
When: Friday, Aug. 30 from 5 – 9 p.m.
Where: Flint Institute of Arts, 1120 E. Kearsley St. in Flint
Crossroads Village & Huckleberry Railroad – Say Goodbye to Summer
Join Crossroads Village this weekend and say goodbye to summer and cast your vote on the staff’s grange fair entries.
When: Saturday, Aug. 31 through Monday, Sept. 2 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. each day
Where: Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad, 6140 Bray Road in Flint
Bikes on the Bricks
This fun and exciting event combines a motorcycle show and law enforcement motorcycle skills competition. Events and activities include minibike races, a police donut eating contest, a family fun block party, vendor and sponsor displays, contests, live bands, an adult beverage tent and a stunt show.
When: Friday, Sept. 6 through Sunday, Sept. 8 from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. on Friday, 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Sunday
Where: Flint’s Downtown Entertainment District, Saginaw Street in Flint
Book Sale at Swartz Creek-Perkins Library
Come find your next great read at this used book sale put on by the Friends of Swartz Creek-Perkins Library
When: Saturday, Sept. 7 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Where: Swartz Creek-Perkins Library, 8095 Civic Drive in Swartz Creek
I hope this information has been useful to you. As always, reach out if there is anything further I can do for you.