Hello and welcome to my e-newsletter! It continues to be a privilege to represent our community in the 95th House District and I look forward to what 2020 has in store for us.
As your representative, I am most effective at my job when acting on your input. I encourage you to reach out to me and my staff with any questions, comments or concerns you may have about issues in the district or legislation that will impact our state. You can contact me toll-free at (855) 347-8095, by email or through my website. Thank you for your commitment to the community we both call home; I look forward to hearing from you!
In this Edition:
- Upcoming Events
- Jail and Pretrial Incarceration Task Force Report
- PFAS Update
- State Income Tax Reminder
Expungement Town Hall
I’m proud to announce that I will be hosting an upcoming Expungement Town Hall with representatives from the Saginaw Defenders Office and Legal Services of Eastern Michigan. For many Michiganders, old, non-violent and low-level criminal convictions create long-lasting obstacles to finding employment or earning new credentials. This event will provide an opportunity to learn about the process of having a criminal record expunged, as well as discuss current legislation to expand Michigan’s expungement process.
When: Monday, Feb. 10, from 6 to 7 p.m.
Where: Bethel AME Church, 535 Cathay St. in Saginaw
Community Coffee Hour
I hope you can join me for my upcoming coffee hour! I look forward to having an informal conversation with you about the issues that families are facing in our community.
When: Friday, Feb. 21, from 8 to 9:30 a.m.
Where: Dawn of A New Day Coffeehouse, 210 S. Washington Ave. in Saginaw
State of the State Address
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer will give her second State of the State Address on Wednesday, Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. She will address a joint session of the Legislature and outline her top priorities for Michigan. Tune in to your local TV station to watch this important event. You will also be able to stream the event here.
MDOT Open House
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will hold a public open house to discuss plans to rebuild I-75 from Hess Avenue to the south I-75/I-675 interchange, and M-46 from Outer Drive to the signalized entrance of Nexteer Automotive. MDOT will widen I-75 from three lanes in each direction to four lanes, replace the M-46 bridge spanning I-75, and rebuild the I-75/M-46 interchange.
When: Tonight, Tuesday, Jan. 28, from 5 to 7:30 p.m.
Where: Buena Vista Township Hall, 1160 South Outer Drive in Saginaw
Jail and Pretrial Incarceration Task Force Report
In response to rapidly growing county jail populations, the Michigan Joint Task Force on Jail and Pretrial Incarceration was charged with examining how state laws, policies, and budgetary decisions affect who goes to jail and how long they stay, and with crafting policy recommendations for the Legislature’s consideration in 2020. Created in the spring of 2019, state and county leaders in Michigan launched this inter-branch, bipartisan project aimed at increasing justice system efficiency and effectiveness.
The Task Force recently released a report of their findings, as well as legislative recommendations for reforming Michigan’s approach to criminal justice. I look forward to seriously discussing these proposals in the Legislature over the coming year as we move toward a more rehabilitative approach to justice — one focused on bringing our neighbors back into our communities as productive members, not further isolating them.
You can read the full report by clicking here.
Michiganders deserves lawmakers who are willing to be leaders in the fight for responsible management and preservation of the environment. Just a few weeks ago, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Attorney General Dana Nessel announced their lawsuit against 17 companies accused of knowingly and intentionally selling, supplying and manufacturing PFAS and PFAS-containing materials in Michigan.
Given our state’s abundance of natural resources, including our Great Lakes, we have a duty to protect those resources and the jobs they provide for hardworking families. That’s why I’m fighting for legislation to mitigate the effects of pollution and protect our families from contaminated water.
In August, I introduced House Bill 4841 as part of a broad plan to expand air quality protections in Michigan. This package of bills would improve public health by expanding air quality criteria, strengthening standards and local control for the emissions permitting process, and ensuring greater transparency and accountability between polluters and the communities they impact.
State Income Tax Reminder
The Michigan Department of Treasury recently announced that Michigan taxpayers can begin to file state income tax returns on Jan. 27.
Individuals can file their state income tax return online, with a tax professional or by mailing in paper forms and documentation. All state income tax returns and payment of any taxes owed must be received by April 15, 2020.
All employers are required to mail previous year wage statements – W-2s and 1099s – to their employees by Jan. 31. End-of-the-year pay stubs should not be used when filing a state income tax return because they are typically not an accurate reflection of all income received. Never hesitate to reach out to me or my staff if you have any questions or concerns!
To learn more about Michigan’s individual income tax, go to www.michigan.gov/incometax or follow the state Treasury Department on Twitter at @MITreasury.
Never hesitate to reach out to me or my staff if you have any questions or concerns!
95th House District