Now that the Legislature is back in session after the spring in-district work period, I wanted to provide some of the most pertinent updates happening at the state Capitol. Below, you’ll find information on recent activity in the Legislature as well as our upcoming community coffee hour.
My team and I are always hard at work for our community. If you, or someone you know, wants to provide any feedback about what’s happening in Lansing or needs assistance of any sort, please feel free to reach out to us at any time. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (517) 373-0826.
Fiscal Year 2023 Budgets
Last week, my colleagues and I began working through the fiscal year 2023 budgets on the House floor. Each budget bill, ranging from the Health and Human Services budget to the higher education budget, passed the full House. The next step in the budget process involves the convening of conference committees where budget targets are negotiated between the governor and the leadership in the Legislature.
I am always laser-focused on ensuring that our schools, roads and local governments are taken care of. It’s vital that we draw down as much federal funding as possible for the benefit of our community and our entire state. To find up-to-date information and learn more about the fiscal year 2023 budgets, you can visit https://house.mi.gov/HFA/.
Ending Discriminatory Housing Restrictions
In spite of our limited success in passing a budget to fund common-sense priorities at adequate levels, I do have some good legislative news to share: The House Committee on Local Government and Municipal Finance voted out my bill, HB 4416!
As a reminder, our bill would create a powerful, practical tool for homeowners to remove discriminatory language in housing deeds. Although housing discrimination is illegal, deeds across the state still include restrictive covenants that prohibit African Americans, Jewish Americans, women and other protected classes from owning property or living in certain areas. Since I first took office, I have been working tirelessly to get this legislation to the governor’s desk, and I am proud to see it moving through the legislative process.
Michigan Reconnect Program
I’m equally as excited to share that I have partnered with Majority Floor Leader Ben Frederick again this session to introduce a package of legislation to enhance the Michigan Reconnect Program in the coming week. Last year, this $30 million program launched to help more than 4.1 million Michiganders 25 years of age or older and do not have a college degree to have the opportunity to earn a tuition-free associate degree or skills certificate.
This new legislation will expand the Reconnect Program to temporarily include 21-24 year old students in an effort to address education gaps caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Other changes include increased accountability and transparency measures for community colleges and allowing for Reconnect Short Term Training Grants for career training programs. With these changes, we can take a step toward mitigating education gaps and driving innovation specific to adult learners in Michigan’s community colleges as we strive to increase the number of residents with a college degree or skill certificate and meet the needs of our evolving economy.
Constituent Coffee Hour: Tuesday, May 24 from 8–9:30 a.m.
Come join my team and me for legislative updates and casual conversation. The event will take place on Tuesday, May 24, from 8-9:30 a.m. at the Allen Neighborhood Center. Constituent meetings such as these are a great opportunity to engage with us and other constituents about what is happening in the state Legislature and your top priorities for the Lansing community. Please RSVP HERE.