Welcome to my latest e-newsletter. With us quickly moving into the middle of the year, this month the Legislature is going to be focused on the budget for Fiscal Year ’22 and passing COVID-19 supplemental funding. Rest assured, I will be hard at work fighting for the needs of our community and each one of the residents of HD 10. With the weather warming up, I will also be in the community going door-to-door to hear from you! Come join me as we talk one-on-one with our neighbors. Continue reading on for legislative updates and resources, along with other community information.
As your state representative, I am most effective when acting on your input. I encourage you to reach out to my office with any concerns, questions or comments you may have. You can contact me at (517) 373-0857, by email at MaryCavanagh@house.mi.gov, or by visiting my website.
House District 10 (Redford Twp. & NW Detroit)
In this Edition:
Please join me at my next virtual Community Conversation for an opportunity to have a chat, ask me questions, and share how I can best represent you in Lansing.
When: Monday, May 17, from 6-7 p.m.
Where: Zoom and Facebook Live. You can register here.
Every month I host these Community Conversations, every third Monday from 6-7 p.m., so please save-the-date for the 3rd Monday of the month to check-in with me about what is going on in Lansing.
You can also like my Facebook page to stay as updated as possible.
This Saturday please come out and join me from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. as we clean Comstock Park and the surrounding area. The park is located at 15000 Trojan St. in Detroit.
We are committed to cleaning up an area in our community each Saturday in May, so checkout my Facebook page. COVID-19 guidelines will be enforced.
Let’s have a good time while doing a good deed!
COVID Emergency Rental Assistance
MSHDA currently has about $282 million in federal funds available to help tenants avoid eviction and landlords recoup owed rent. The CDC’s Eviction Moratorium is in effect until June 30, 2021, which protects against eviction when invoked by the tenant, but it does not help tenants in paying their outstanding balances. The COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program helps tenants pay debts for filed evictions and could ultimately help avoid eviction.
Renters making 80% of the area median income or less are eligible. For other eligibility criteria and a link to the secure online application site, visit Michigan.gov/CERA. Landlords or tenants can fill out the CERA application and upload required documents online.
Those who do not have a computer or smartphone can apply for assistance through their local Housing Assessment Resource Agency (HARA). A list of HARAs by county can also be found on the CERA website.
I encourage everyone who is eligible to take advantage of this program and take steps toward housing stability!
Small Business Relief
The American Rescue Plan Act established the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) to provide funding to help restaurants and other eligible businesses keep their doors open.
This program will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location.
Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses no later than March 11, 2023. Further information about the Restaurant Revitalization Fund and how to apply can be found at www.sba.gov/restaurants.
The U.S Small Business Administration has multiple resources available including debt relief, loans and other grant programs. Learn more by visiting SBA’s website here.
Unemployment Work Requirements
Unemployment insurance claimants are traditionally required to actively seek work and report their activities to the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) during certification for any week they receive benefits. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this requirement has been waived since March 2020.
In a recent House Oversight Committee hearing it was announced that Michigan’s Unemployment Agency is planning to reinstate work-search requirements for those on unemployment by the end of May. This will mean that people on unemployment will now have to prove they are actively looking for work by contacting at least two employers per week and verifying that information with UIA.
The UIA will be rolling out a series of communications aimed to educate the public to ensure people are prepared and know what activities are acceptable, how to track and report them, and what happens if they fail to do so. More information will be provided as it becomes available. If you have questions or need assistance with your unemployment claim do not hesitate to reach out to my office. You can also stay up to date with UIA requirements by going to Michigan.gov/LEO.
Last week Gov. Whitmer announced Michigan’s path out of the COVID-19 pandemic and getting “MI Vacc to Normal,” with the goal to equitably vaccinate 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and up. To date, just over 4 million people have received their first dose and to reach our goal, roughly 5.67 million people need to be fully vaccinated.
The “MI Vacc to Normal” plan follows science and allows Michiganders to start moving towards a sense of normalcy after they are vaccinated. The plan provides four steps for how we can safely and effectively work towards getting out of the pandemic.
We have a clear path to accompany every step of this process and if we all work together, we can get this done and get MI Vacc to Normal! If you want a vaccine and haven’t been able to schedule an appointment, find a ride, or just aren’t even sure where to start, please reach out to my office so that we can put you in touch with resources to help.
Vaccine information for Detroit residents:
The City of Detroit recently announced that starting April 29, the Detroit Health Department will resume Johnson & Johnson vaccines at two locations Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
Residents can get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (one shot) at these locations by walking in without an appointment or making an appointment at (313) 230-0505.
Vaccine information for Redford residents:
Wayne County is offering COVID-19 vaccination appointments by calling (866) 610-3885 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Eligibility includes residents and workers aged 16 and older from Belleville, Dearborn, Dearborn Heights, Ecorse, Flatrock, Hamtramck, Harper Woods, Highland Park, Inkster, Lincoln Park, Melvindale, Redford Township, River Rouge, Romulus, Taylor, Wayne and Westland.
Clinics are located at Schoolcraft College VisTaTech Center (18600 Haggerty Road in Livonia), in addition to the Wayne County Community College Downriver Campus (21000 Northline Road in Taylor).
Eagles Helping Hands
I recently had the privilege to recognize Eagles Helping Hands with a special tribute for their outstanding work serving the people of Redford and the surrounding communities with their food rescue and distribution program.
Food support services are vital to the health of our communities as they often provide a last line of defense for families who might not typically qualify for state programs, while also ensuring they have access to quality foods. Not only does Eagles Helping Hands provide a service to the community, but their mission also helps to reduce the amount of food piling up in landfills.
Eagles Helping Hands provides this essential resource to the community each Friday morning and there are no questions asked or income requirements. April Roe Agosta and Tish Forbing, along with their dedicated team of volunteers, care for our community and their positive impact and hard work doesn’t go unnoticed!
Eagles Helping Hands is located at 26255 Schoolcraft Ave. in Redford and open most Friday mornings for drive-ups and on Mondays and Wednesdays for their food pantry, depending on weather and when trucks arrive. For more information and times that they run their food distribution, check out their Facebook page, Friends of Eagles Helping Hands.
First Hundred Days
I am so proud of the work that we have accomplished so far during my first 100 days in office. I’ve been hard at work pushing for legislation that aligns with my core values and beliefs, and what our community needs, while addressing the pandemic and demanding the money we rightfully deserve for COVID testing, vaccines and job recovery. Some of my top priorities also include creating lasting health care reforms and building stronger communities with great public schools and roads that last.
I am fortunate to work alongside such a wonderful group of like-minded colleagues to fight for the needs of our community and the state of Michigan. Stay tuned-in for all the work that we are doing in the next few months!
I Want to Hear from You!
During this challenging time, it is more important than ever to stay in touch. I want to hear from you. What do you need? How can we help you? My office is here to assist you or answer any questions you may have. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at MaryCavanagh@house.mi.gov.
You can also stay up-to-date about what’s going on in Lansing and find community events by following me on social media. You can ‘like’ my Facebook page here.
I hope you found this information useful. Please feel free to contact my office if we can ever be of any assistance.