Hello, and welcome to my e-newsletter. I would like to take this moment to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to serve you in House District 95 and to act as your voice in the Capitol. In this issue you will find information on the following:
· Upcoming Coffee Hour and Town Hall
· House Passes School Safety Package
· SB 897: An Attack on Health Care
· May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
As your representative, I am most effective at my job when acting on your input, and 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 at firstname.lastname@example.org or through my website, guerra.housedems.com. I look forward to hearing from you, and thank you for your commitment to the community we both call home.
Upcoming Coffee Hour and Town Hall
My coffee hours are a chance to sit down in an informal setting and discuss issues facing our state. My next coffee hour will be held on:
· Monday, May 21, from 4:30-6 p.m. at the Hoyt Library Auditorium, 505 Janes. Ave. in Saginaw
I am also holding a Raise the Age town hall to discuss raising the age of juvenile court jurisdiction from 17 to 18 years of age. Information for the town hall is below:
WHEN: Monday, June 4, from 6-7:30 p.m.
WHERE: East Side Soup Kitchen, 940 E. Genesee Ave. in Saginaw
WHO: Rep. Guerra and special guests, Judge Barge Meter, Probate Court Judge of the Family Division; Jason Smith with the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency; Lisa Coney, social worker and transition coordinator for Saginaw ISD; and Brad Gomoluch, coordinator for the Saginaw County Juvenile Center
If you can’t make it to the coffee hour or town hall, please feel free to contact me by email or phone. I hope to see you soon!
House Passes School Safety Package
Last month, the governor released a school safety plan to focus on preparation, intervention, response and recovery by creating a School Safety Task Force. The task force would be charged with advisory responsibilities and be made up of the directors of the Department of Health and Human Services, the Michigan State Police, and the Superintendent of Public Instruction. It also includes six gubernatorial appointees from various sections of the school community and four members appointed by the four separate caucuses in the Legislature.
This week, the House voted out six bills that build off of the governor’s proposed school safety plan. The six bills would do the following:
· House Bill 5828 takes the School Safety Task Force created by the governor’s plan and once it completes its duties, the task force turns into a School Safety Commission that is charged with, among other things, determining if school safety measures are optimal, adequate or inadequate within 90 days of its creation.
· House Bill 5829 would also require school districts, charter schools, and non-public schools to designate a liaison with the School Safety Commission and require them to submit to inspections by the State Police.
· House Bill 5830 would place a requirement that any new school built after Jan. 1, 2019, would meet certain minimum requirements.
· House Bill 5850 would eliminate the sunset of the OK2SAY initiative, allowing it to exist in perpetuity.
· House Bill 5851 would require school districts and charter schools to annually report attempts and threats of violence to the State Police, who would then compile the information and provide a report to the School Safety Commission.
· House Bill 5852 would require active violence response training to be added to the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards Act.
Though this is a step toward making our school buildings — and in turn, our children, educators and school administrators — safer, it is not the only solution to the issue of safety in our schools. I continue to work with my Democratic colleagues in the House to determine additional methods for ensuring classrooms are protected.
SB 897: An Attack on Health Care
You may have already heard about Senate Bill 897, which would change Medicaid requirements in Michigan. SB 897 creates an estimated $25-$50 million in new red tape bureaucracy, while taking away health care from working Michiganders. Michigan families, children and seniors rely on health care to get ahead – this legislation only pushes them backward. Working Medicaid recipients would have to report workforce engagement requirements monthly and verify family income quarterly. Any changes would have to be reported within 10 days. If they fail to provide it in time? Families will lose their health care for an entire year. The bureaucracy the state would have to put in place to track this data is staggering, with no cost savings to the overall program. This bill will make it harder for people to show up healthy to work and to move onto jobs that provide stable incomes for their families.
No one should ever have to worry about having their health care taken away. Medicaid is a hand up to those who struggle, not a hand out. I’ve heard from many of you about your opposition to Senate Bill 897. Know that I stand with you and oppose this bill. We all deserve the security and dignity that health care provides, and I’m working hard in Lansing to ensure that those who need it, keep it.
May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
With the warm weather finally upon us, many of us will begin opting for motorcycles rather than our regular cars. Motorcycles constitute 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the country, yet motorcyclists made up 13 percent of the country’s traffic fatalities in 2016. As we recognize Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, drivers on four wheels and two wheels should keep in mind the following safety tips:
· Choose a bike that fits you; “supersport bikes” have driver death rates about four times that of cruisers or standard bikes, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
· Invest in antilock brakes
· New riders should take a motorcycle safety course, and experienced riders should take refresher courses after being off their bikes for a while
· Know the rules of the road
· Be aware that riding with a passenger requires considerably more skill
· Never drink and ride
· Drive defensively, especially at intersections, where half of all collisions occur
· Watch for hazards like potholes, manhole covers, oil slicks, puddles, debris, railroad tracks and gravel
· Assume you are invisible to other motorists and position yourself to be seen
· Use headlights day and night
· Be courteous; don’t weave in and out of lanes, or ride on the shoulder or between lanes
· Don’t speed
· Wear bright and/or reflective clothing that is durable and boots that cover the ankles
· Wear goggles, glasses or use a face shield that is ventilated to prevent fogging, and make sure it’s clear if riding at night
For more information about motorcycle road safety, go to https://www.nsc.org/road-safety/safety-topics/motorcycle-safety