I hope everyone is staying safe and warm during the snowy weather! In this update, I will be discussing my committee assignments for this session, this year’s State of the State address and the first bills passed last week by the 102nd Legislature. I look forward to representing you this term and I hope to see you around the district sometime soon!
All the best,
I am thrilled to share that I will be the chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on School Aid and Department of Education this session. I will also be serving on the Appropriations and Education Committees, as well as the subcommittees on Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy; Higher Education and Community Colleges; and Judiciary. I’m looking forward to all that we will accomplish over the next two years on these critical committees, particularly prioritizing continued increased investments in education.
Annual State of the State Address
Last Wednesday evening, I joined my fellow legislators in welcoming Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for her annual State of the State address. During the address, Governor Whitmer touched on how we can help our students recover from COVID-19 learning loss with additional investments in tutoring and after-school programs. She also talked about a shared goal that I have with her to provide every Michigan 4-year-old access to free and public preschool education by the end of her second term, an initiative I fully support.
Along with these steps to improve education in our state, she addressed repealing the retirement tax and expanding the working families tax credit. Both of these measures will put thousands of dollars back into Michiganders’ pockets. Gov. Whitmer also talked about modernizing outdated laws and enacting protections so people can love who they choose and make their own health care decisions with their doctors.
First Bills of the 102nd Legislature
Last week, the House passed three critical pieces of legislation to deliver immediate, meaningful relief for hardworking families, end the unfair retirement tax, support those in need, invest in local communities and bring jobs to Michigan.
HB 4001 repealed the retirement tax, a harmful tax that was imposed by a previous Legislature. This repeal will ensure our seniors can keep the dollars they worked a lifetime to save. The legislation will eliminate the tax on public pensions and eligible private retirement income, including employer-matched and mandated 401k contributions and will be phased in over the next four years.
HB 4002 increases the working families tax credit from 6% of the federal amount to 30% and is retroactive for 2022. This increase will put thousands of dollars in the hands of over 700,000 Michigan families. Nearly half of the children in Michigan — just under 1 million kids — will benefit from this expansion.
The House also passed a supplemental bill to provide immediate relief to Michiganders. The supplemental includes:
- $25 million to prevent water shutoffs across the state.
- $75 million to help support small businesses.
- $275 million to support housing and community development, with a special focus on affordable housing.
- $40 million to support workers.
- $200 million for an Upper Peninsula investment to retain over 1,000 jobs and expand leading-edge technology and advanced manufacturing capability of the US.
Please stay tuned for more news on what is happening in Lansing and in the district, including the announcement of upcoming community conversations.