Happy September! Kids are back in school, and we get to enjoy those final summer days before the temperatures drop. Excitingly, September has a legislative session scheduled for the first time in a few months. I’m looking forward to getting back to Lansing and hopefully having legislative updates for you all soon.
This month, I will be hosting my monthly Coffee with Christine at the Portage Community Senior Center (203 E. Centre Ave. in Portage). The new space has been a great resource for our meetings, and I highly recommend folks come and join us! We will be meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Sept. 23. Please come with questions and comments.
Additionally this month, I will be having another iteration of my online Mingle with Morse evening coffee hours. I know that some community members still feel more comfortable with a virtual option, or find it easier to hop on Zoom rather than leave the house, so I try to make that option available when possible. We will be meeting virtually on Sept. 14, at 5:30 p.m. Register here or at the link below!
You can register in advance. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
Sept. 19-25 is National Railway Safety Week this year. I plan to participate in some safety demonstrations and events during that week. The details for events on this topic in Kalamazoo County are still being worked out, so keep an eye out for future information both in your email inbox and on social media.
Department of Natural Resources (DNR):
As the fall deer hunting season approaches, I want to highlight some important updates on harvest reporting. The following information was shared to my office from the DNR:
Beginning this year, online harvest reporting is required for all hunters who successfully take a deer. This change was unanimously approved by the members of the Natural Resources Commission (NRC).
The move away from the mail-in reporting is due to a decline in responses. This decline can result in uncertain estimates and potentially inaccurate harvest data.
To assist hunters, the Michigan DNR recently announced a new website and mobile application to provide guidance, collect the data and answer questions. That website can be reached here.
Hunters will have up to 72 hours after taking a deer to report their harvest. The DNR estimates it should take about three to five minutes to complete the report, and there are two ways to do it:
- Report online at Michigan.gov/DNRHarvestReport.
- Use the DNR’s new mobile app — an even faster option — available in the Android Play Store and the Apple App Store.
Hunters who can’t report their harvest due to a lack of internet access or smart device may get help from a family member or friend with access by providing them with their kill tag license number, date of birth and harvest location to report on the hunter’s behalf.
Answers to frequently asked questions are available on the DNR website for this and other questions related to deer harvest reporting.
While the hunters who tested the system last year found it to be a quick and easy process as outlined in this video, assistance for those experiencing technical difficulties will be available at a variety of locations around the state or by calling (517) 284-9453 during normal business hours.
State Small Business Credit Initiative:
Michigan is initiating the first round of the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI 2.0), meaning up to $72 million will be available to support loans for small businesses.
In May, Michigan was approved for nearly $240 million in SSBCI 2.0 funding to be used for capital access, credit support and venture capital programs designed to support the growth of Michigan’s small businesses. SSBCI 2.0 is designed to increase the availability of capital to small businesses through loans and equity investment and allow private-sector lenders to provide loans to small businesses that would otherwise be unavailable under conventional terms. The program requires partnership with private-sector lenders, which in turn provides the new lending including through SSBCI 2.0 support.
This comes directly from communications from the Michigan Economic Development Corp.
Michigan also has various programs such as the Access to Capital program and the Michigan Small Business Venture Capital program to help Michigan businesses succeed in challenging environments. The best way to learn more about these programs is to check out the Michigan Economic Development Corp. website. You can find breakdowns of various programs as well as FAQs.
Autumn always seems to fill up our schedules: With a return to legislative session, and election season upon us, this year is no different. As always, thank you for taking the time to follow my updates and for being connected with my office. If you have questions or concerns, my office can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or (517) 373-1774, please don’t hesitate to reach out. For any friends and neighbors who want to get connected to my E-Newsletters, you can send them to sign up.
State House Representative- HD 61