Hello from Lansing!
Today marks the middle of our spring in-district work period. It’s been nice to be in the district this past week and hear from constituents! We had a great coffee hour on Monday morning at the Ann Arbor District Library, where we discussed a wide range of topics. When we get back to Lansing on April 10, we will add a focus on our state’s budget for the upcoming year.
As always, you can contact my team through email at CarrieRheingans@house.mi.gov or by phone at (517) 373-8835 with any questions, comments or concerns.
Restoring Worker Freedoms
On March 24, Gov. Whitmer signed the bills repealing the so-called “right-to-work” laws and restoring the practice of using local prevailing wage on government-funded construction projects. I was proud to co-sponsor these bills in the House and help pass legislation that working families have desperately needed for years.
Firearm Safety Legislation Update
Last week, the second part of the three firearm safety bill packages — focused on safe storage of firearms — was passed by the House of Representatives, and included the following bills:
- HB 4144 requires that unattended firearms be securely stored if in a household with a minor.
- HB 4139 updates the sentencing guidelines for not securely storing firearms.
- HB 4141 and HB 4140 removes sales and use taxes from firearm safety device purchases, such as safes, lock boxes, and trigger and barrel locks, through the end of 2024.
On March 22, these bills passed both the House Judiciary Committee and the House of Representatives. I am a co-sponsor of this entire package as well as legislation focused on creating and implementing extreme risk protection orders and bills requiring background checks for all firearm sales, which have already passed the House and Senate.
In the coming weeks, we are going to continue working on the extreme risk protection orders package.
I suggest signing up for committee email notifications through the Legislature’s website to stay up to date on the status of this important legislation.
March is Reading Month
Last week, I read to my daughter’s kindergarten class for March is Reading Month. I read two books, one highlighting a family celebrating Ramadan and another that told a legend of how Michigan was formed by glaciers.
Recent Power Outages
I have continued to be actively involved in discussions about how the Legislature can hold utility companies accountable for the lengthy outages that occurred last month and how they can prevent future outages. As I have said, it is of the utmost importance to me that Michiganders receive the most reliable electricity for the lowest costs and that we reduce the frequency and duration of outages. Continue to stay tuned on this front, as discussions are ongoing.
Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act Expansion Happy Hour Celebration!
On March 16, Gov. Whitmer signed protections for sexual orientation and gender identity and expression into our state’s civil rights act. This was decades in the making, and we will be celebrating accordingly! Please join me, along with state Sens. Sue Shink and Jeff Irwin and Reps. Felicia Brabec, Jennifer Conlin, Jason Morgan, and Jimmie Wilson Jr., on Tuesday, April 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the North Star Lounge, 301 N. Fifth Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48104.
District Highlight: Fox Science Preserve!
Looking for something fun to do with your family? Check out the Fox Science Preserve, 2240 Peters Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. You’ll be able to see what the geological landscape looked like approximately 12,000 years ago when the glaciers retreated toward the arctic. My family and I visited the preserve recently, and my aspiring scientist absolutely loved it!
Next Constituent Coffee Hours
Please join me for a constituent coffee hour on Saturday, April 15, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at White Lotus Farm, 7217 W. Liberty Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. This is a great place to take your kids, so please feel free to bring them along!
If coffee isn’t your beverage of choice and you aren’t able to make a morning coffee hour, no need to worry! We will also host a constituent happy hour on Friday, April 21, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at Homes Campus, 112 Jackson Plaza, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. Join me and special guest, Sen. Sue Shink, for a sour (or any beverage of your choice!).
My team and I are always looking for the next best place to host our coffee and happy hours. If you would like to make a suggestion, reach out to any of my official social media pages to share your thoughts!