Welcome to our August e-newsletter!
Included in this edition are some important legislative updates, unemployment assistance updates and other resources I hope will prove helpful. Please do not hesitate to reach out to my office by phone at (517) 373-1792 or email at FeliciaBrabec@house.mi.gov for questions about these or any other state-level issues.
State Representative, 55th House District
Upcoming Coffee Hour
Please join me for our first in-person coffee hour! This is an opportunity to chat, ask me questions and share how I can best represent you in Lansing. I will be hosting my coffee hour this Saturday, Aug. 28, from 9-10 a.m. at Marsh View Meadows, located at 300 E Textile Road in Saline. Masks are encouraged. I hope to see you there!
Introduction of Minority Donor Awareness Resolution
This month, I introduced House Resolution 150 declaring August as National Minority Donor Awareness Month in Michigan. This month is meant to educate communities about the importance of having diverse donors. While transplants and blood transfusions can be successful regardless of the race and ethnicity of the donor and recipient, the chance of longer-term survival is typically greater when the donor and recipient are closely matched in terms of their shared genetic background. We know that many minority populations are at a higher risk for certain diseases, so another purpose of this month is to decrease the demand for transplants by promoting disease prevention and healthy living. By raising awareness, we can save and improve the quality of life of diverse communities and create a positive culture surrounding organ, eye and tissue donation. I was excited to see the House adopt this resolution. If you are interested in registering as an organ, eye or tissue donor, visit RegisterMe.org to get started.
DTE Damages and Reliability Credits
DTE Energy is offering an Electric Reliability Credit of $25 to Michiganders who have experienced reliability issues with their service. The credit is available upon request only, and credit applications can be found here. DTE will conduct an investigation of the request to determine if any of the following occurred:
- Power outage of more than 120 hours under catastrophic conditions.
- Power outage of more than 16 hours under non-catastrophic conditions.
- Eight or more power outages during a 12-month period.
If you believe DTE Energy was involved in a negligent act that resulted in damage to your property, you can submit a damage claim online or request a damage claim affidavit by phone at (800) 477-4747. DTE will investigate your claim and render a decision within 30 days. DTE will not be responsible for damages or losses resulting from weather-related conditions.
DIFS Storm Resources
The Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) has resources on their website that you may find helpful when working with insurance companies to file a claim and repair damages, such as what to do before and after a disaster and how to ensure that claims are filed correctly. Preparing for an upcoming disaster should involve taking photos of each room in your home and gathering a detailed inventory of your personal property, including valuables and equipment that do not appear in the photos. After a disaster, contact your insurance agent or company to file a claim as soon as possible. Take photos of all damage and make a list of personal property that was damaged or destroyed with the approximate date, price and place of purchase. While you shouldn’t make any permanent repairs until your insurance company has inspected the damage, you should make temporary repairs as needed to prevent further damage.
To help Michiganders stay calm and organized while filing insurance claims, DIFS has listed a printable “Insurance Claims Tracking Sheet” here. This will help claimants to keep copies of all correspondence, including the date, name and title of the person you spoke with and what was said, and to keep records of your time and expenses. It’s critical that claimants understand their insurance policy and file claims with complete, correct information as soon as possible. Be sure to ask questions if you have them and negotiate with the insurance company if their first offer doesn’t meet your expectations. If you believe you were treated unfairly in getting a claim paid, you may file a complaint with DIFS online at Michigan.gov/DIFS or by calling (877) 999-6442.
St. Joe’s Hospital is hosting a fall program for 12- to 14-year-olds and their families who are struggling with food insecurity. Participants of Nutrition Buddies will receive a weekly box of local produce and four after-school cooking classes alongside St. Joe’s doctors. The classes will be held virtually for the time being from 4:30-6 p.m. on Wednesday or Thursday evenings, and all ingredients for the class will be available for pick-up at no charge from The Farm at St. Joe’s. If you have any questions about the program, please call (734) 712-7993 or email NutritionBuddies@stjoeshealth.org. Sign your child up for Nutrition Buddies here!
On Aug. 4, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a new eviction moratorium through Oct. 3 for renters living in communities that are experiencing “substantial” and “high” spread of the coronavirus. As of the afternoon of Aug. 25, local transmission of COVID-19 in Washtenaw County is at a high level, as defined in the CDC COVID Data Tracker; thus, residents facing eviction are protected under the national eviction moratorium. Residents are advised to continue to monitor the CDC COVID Data Tracker for updated information on the level of transmission throughout Washtenaw County. The rate of infection will determine if the eviction moratorium will be in effect, and the moratorium will no longer be applicable if the county falls below “substantial” for 14 consecutive days. If the county stays at the “substantial” level, the eviction moratorium will be in effect until Oct. 3.
CAN Annual Back to School BBQ
The Community Action Network (CAN) of Ann Arbor is hosting their annual Back to School BBQ on Thursday, Aug. 26, from 5-7 p.m. at Bryant Community Center. The BBQ is outdoors, and masks will be required when you’re not eating or drinking. This event will feature free back-to-school hairstyling, backpacks, school supplies, library card sign-ups, dance performances and more! CAN is asking attendees who want their hair styled to sign up for a hairstyling slot by calling (734) 944-2985 ext. 107 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join me to knock doors in the community! We’ll be talking with neighbors about the issues that matter most to them. We will meet at Marsh View Meadows, located at 300 E. Textile Road in Saline, on Aug. 28 at 11 a.m. for a quick training and to distribute materials. New volunteers are welcome!
Register at : https://forms.gle/sywZKuCEgfHn5rUj7.
I hope you found this information useful. Please feel free to contact my office if we can ever be of any assistance.
Felicia A. Brabec
House District 55