Let’s celebrate summer! In this issue of my e-newsletter, I’ll share some summer safety strategies and provide you with a recap of what I’ve been busy doing since the last issue. Keeping residents informed and engaged is at the core of my service as a state representative. Communication is a two-way street, so please don’t hesitate to contact me should you have concerns, questions or bill suggestions. I am currently working on two bill drafts that originated from ideas from residents! Never forget – we are stronger together!
District 8 ‘Community Conversations’ 2021
Hosting my bi-monthly “Community Conversations” is a highlight of my work as your state representative. I love engaging with residents, business owners and other stakeholders from the district – sharing resources and hearing your voices on how the state government should work to improve our overall quality of life. Our May Community Conversation focused on second chances, and we had a very informative presentation on the city’s “Clean Slate” program to expunge misdemeanors, non-assaultive felonies and certain marijuana offenses from their records. The program is truly changing lives. You can still watch it on my Facebook page.
Now that we are finally turning the corner on the pandemic with many restrictions being lifted, we’ve decided to hold our morning Community Conversation in-person for the month of June! We will be meeting on Monday, June 14, at the Motor City Java House, 17336 Lahser Road. We will broadcast on Facebook live for those wishing to attend virtually. Our evening Conversation on Friday, June 26, will be entirely virtual.
The theme will be “Safe Fun in the Sun,” and we will have a presentation on fireworks (laws and safe usage) and water safety, especially around pools, beaches, etc.
Please lock-in the following dates and times:
- Monday, June 14 10-11:30 a.m.
- Friday, June 26 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Join Zoom Meeting
Fireworks Law Needs Revamping
I love our summer holidays and am looking forward to enjoying family and friends again after missing out last summer due to the pandemic. The one thing I am not looking forward to is the excessive and dangerous fireworks that disturb the peace throughout the summer. As a former district manager, and since I’ve been in office, residents have shared their frustration and sense of helplessness regarding the use of fireworks in residential communities. Many times, these are commercial-grade fireworks that damage our streets and sidewalks, keep young and old from getting a good night’s sleep, and cause severe anxiety in many pets throughout the city, not to mention the injuries associated with these activities.
This problem is not unique to Detroit. I am one of the sponsors of a bill in a five-bill package that would amend the Michigan Penal Code to prohibit a class of fireworks including those similar to what you would see at licensed fireworks events. The legislation does not prohibit the sale, possession or transfer of harmless things like toy pistols, paper caps, sparklers and toy snakes.
Hopefully, this legislation will offer some peace of mind to so many Michiganders – veterans, senior citizens, parents of small children, pet owners and more – who have had their lives seriously disrupted by rampant, and often dangerous, firework use in their own neighborhoods.
My bill, House Bill 4891, as well as the entire package, were referred to the Committee on Regulatory Reform.
Fab Five Mark 100 Days
Coalitions are so important to getting things accomplished in Lansing, which is why I am honored to work closely with my fellow freshman colleagues from Detroit – affectionately known as The Fab Five.
To mark our first 100 days in the Michigan 101st Legislature, we did a live broadcast and shared what we have been working on since arriving at the Capitol and our priorities moving forward. We also introduced a package of bills that will benefit the people we represent directly. My bill, HB 4774, places a moratorium on storage unit auctions. As residents struggle to navigate the pandemic, they should not have the added fear of their personal belongings being auctioned off because they had to choose between groceries and medications or their monthly storage bill. Think this is a good idea? Contact the chair of the House Committee on Commerce and Tourism and request the bill get a hearing. This is the next step to having it become law. You can contact committee chair Rep. Steve Marino at email@example.com.
Budget bills passed out of the House
Before newly elected legislators begin serving, we are asked this question, “Do you want to be on policy or appropriations committees?” After what I’ve seen of this appropriations process, I’m glad to be on the policy side. There have to be good-faith negotiations on both sides and with the governor to ensure our government works for all Michiganders. Until recently, that was not the case.
The good news is, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Republican legislative leaders came together and reached an agreement on the budget after months of division. There was even more good news when the recent revenue estimating conference revealed that the state has an additional $3.5 billion in unanticipated revenues, thanks in part to federal pandemic relief and responsible government spending.
Conference Committees tasked with working out the differences between the House and Senate budget bills, will meet soon, and the entire budget should make it to the Governor’s desk this summer.
Young honored with Shero Award
I was honored to receive the Shero Award for Empowering the Community from the Ladies Entrepreneur Empowerment Circle (LEEC). This national and international organization is based in Detroit and has nearly 8,000 members. These ladies unite to encourage and support each other, while working to build a strong economy, particularly in communities of color. Thank you, Andrea Lorena Thompson, for recommending me for this honor!
Motor City Makeover Success!
Team Young was excited to participate in Motor City Makeover in back-to-back weekends. We worked alongside members of Oak Grove and helped with the installation of beautiful neighborhood signs, pruned at Farm City and closed the day out with cleaning around a vacant house on Pierson, with members from the Old Redford Gardens Block Club.
The next weekend, we partnered with the residents of College Park, a beautiful community that has one area that’s plagued by illegal dumping. I will be working to find long term solutions to this dumping.
TCF Banks invests in Detroit neighborhoods
Financial education and empowerment are important issues that I have been working to promote in District 8. Reducing the number of unbanked residents and helping them establish bank or credit union accounts is important when trying to build good credit. Having financial institutions close by is one critical component to make this a reality. I am thankful that TCF Bank decided to invest in House District 8 by opening its first community branch in the Grandmont Rosedale neighborhood. The newest regional bank, at 19600 Grand River Avenue, is part of TCF’s $5 million investment into the Grandmont Rosedale area. They also presented Sherita Smith, executive director of the Grandmont Rosedale Development Corp., with a $25,000 check for continued investment in the area. District 8’s own LaTrice McClendon, senior vice president and director of community relations for TCF Bank, has been a presenter at our Community Conversation on financial literacy. This is what true community partnership looks like.
Emergency rental help available
The COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) is a federally funded program available through the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) to help Michigan tenants facing pandemic-related hardships avoid eviction, while also ensuring landlords can recoup back rent owed to them. The program can provide rental and utility assistance for eligible renter households so that they retain their housing stability. The CERA program is an important resource for those who have experienced financial hardships due to the pandemic and provides peace of mind to renters by ensuring they will be able to stay in their homes.
MSHDA is currently administering the CERA program through its statewide network of local nonprofit housing resource agencies.
MSHDA estimates that 50,000 to 55,000 families will be able to receive financial assistance through CERA. For more info on who is eligible, check out the FAQ page.
Turning a hobby into a business
One of the pleasures of my job is recognizing the accomplishments of those living and working in the district. Since being in office, I started Small Business Recognition Mondays and was excited to honor Ja’Nye Hampton, owner and operator of the Detroit Flower Company, in May. This amazing young lady turned a love of flowers into a successful small business. I am looking forward to getting my next bouquet from Detroit Flower Company. Ja’Nye and her dynamic team of family and friends get it done with excellence!
We all know there are individuals and organizations that deserve special recognition for the tremendous work they do to serve the people of our communities and our state. If you know of an individual or organization that has truly gone above and beyond for its neighbors, you may fill out the form on this page to request an official state tribute so that we may all show our full appreciation for their efforts.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to call me at (517) 373-3815 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
STEPHANIE A. YOUNG
8th House District
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- Michigan House Democrats – housedems.com
- State Senate – senate.michigan.gov
- State House of Representatives –.house.mi.gov
- Michigan Legislature – legislature.mi.gov
- U.S. Senate – senate.gov
- U.S. House of Representatives –.house.gov
- Wayne County –waynecounty.com
- City of Detroit – detroitmi.gov