Welcome to the latest edition of my e-newsletter!
Included in this issue are important updates, along with a few resources I hope you find helpful. Please do not hesitate to reach out to my office by phone at (517) 373-0844 or email at NataliePrice@house.mi.gov, for questions about what’s included here or any state-level issue. Please follow me on Facebook to get regular legislative updates as well.
5th House District
In This Issue:
- Upcoming Events
- Virtual Town Hall: Jan. 12
- Community Conversation: Jan. 29
- Legislative & District Updates
- State Updates & Resources
- Important Dates
Virtual Town Hall
I am excited to announce that beginning in January, my office will host monthly virtual town halls in addition to our regularly scheduled community conversations. We will have our first virtual town hall on Jan. 12 from 11 a.m. to noon on Facebook Live.
On Jan. 29, I will be joined by special guest state Sen. Mallory McMorrow at the Baldwin Public Library in Birmingham from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. This will be a great opportunity to hear about Michigan House and Senate priorities and projects that our offices are working on in 2024. We would love for you and your neighbors to attend and talk with us about what you hope we can accomplish for our state in the new year.
Legislative & District Updates
Connecting with Community Members and Gearing Up for the New Year
As we bid farewell to 2023 and eagerly embrace the dawn of a new year, I am filled with deep gratitude for the privilege of serving our district. Being a voice for our communities is not a duty but a tremendous privilege. It brings me immense pride to advocate for the concerns and aspirations of families, workers, students, seniors and veterans, and to actively engage with you all at community events.
Reflecting on the past year, I am incredibly proud of the tangible progress we have achieved in our state. However, this is merely a stepping stone, and I know that there is still much more work ahead. I am eager and committed to continuing this journey, collaborating with you to deliver real solutions that will shape Michigan into a state where people can build their lives for generations to come. We rise up together with unwavering determination and a shared vision for a better, more prosperous Michigan.
This year, I have been proud to work for you on the following legislative successes:
- Passing the Reproductive Health Act, removing unnecessary and burdensome barriers to abortion care and other basic reproductive health care.
- Funding the Michigan Achievement Scholarship to put higher education in reach of more students and families.
- Cutting taxes for working families so their earnings can go further.
- Eliminating unnecessary red tape that presents challenges when our state invests in critical buildings, such as public colleges and universities.
- Investing in critical infrastructure, such as roads, schools and water lines, to support Michigan’s growing economy.
- Instituting telemedicine parity, requiring insurance companies to reimburse health care providers the same amount whether the appropriate service is rendered in-person or via telemedicine.
- Making breakfast and lunch free for students in public schools, saving parents time and money.
- Restoring prevailing wage to make sure state-contracted employees are paid what they’re worth.
- Leading the Midwest through passage of the landmark Clean Energy & Jobs Act, a critical step toward Michigan’s clean, socially conscious, energy-independent future.
Please note this is not an exhaustive list of all the issues our office is working on. Stay tuned for updates as we continue working on our agenda that puts working families first.
State Updates & Resources
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson Launches New Online FOIA Tool
On Dec. 12, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson unveiled a new online transparency tool that makes Michigan Department of State (MDOS) records more accessible to the public. The new online portal will make Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests at MDOS easier and the results more accessible. Responses will be searchable by keyword and will not require an additional fee to access.
Under the previous system, FOIA requests had to be made by email, fax, mail or in person and would be manually reviewed and assigned to the appropriate business area of MDOS for processing. While those options remain available, requests made via the new online portal at Michigan.gov/MDOSFOIA will be automatically routed and processed in fewer steps.
Learn How to Help Reverse the Effects of an Opioid Overdose
In the event of an opioid overdose, Naloxone (commonly known by the brand name Narcan) can be used to reverse the effect of an opioid overdose and save lives. Naloxone is not addictive. Payment for the medication Naloxone is covered by Medicaid and many other insurances. Many non-profit organizations also distribute Naloxone.
In 2016, Michigan passed a Naloxone standing order law that allows a pharmacist to dispense Naloxone without an individual prescription and without identifying a particular patient. With this, the “prescription” comes from the standing doctor’s order from the state. Although individual doctor prescriptions still work for this, as an alternative, family, friends or others can now obtain Naloxone to use in an emergency without an individual prescription. Administrative rules have been written to implement the standing order. Questions may be directed to MDHHS-NALXNERQST@michigan.gov.
- Find Naloxone near you in Wayne County
- Find Naloxone near you in Oakland County
- MDHHS Strategy and Guidance on Naloxone Distribution
- How to give Naloxone
- Safety Advice for Patients & Family Members
Gov. Whitmer Signed Supplemental Bills Lowering Costs with Investments in Schools, Colleges and Infrastructure
On Dec. 18, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed bipartisan bills alleviating school district debt, investing in infrastructure, supporting community colleges and public universities and lowering costs for families across Michigan on taxes and higher education.
The bills fund on-campus projects at Michigan community colleges and public universities, further cementing our higher education system as one of the best places to get a degree and the skills needed to land a good-paying job. The bills also fund the Michigan Department of Lifelong Education, Advancement, and Potential, a new state agency tasked with improving outcomes for kids from preschool through postsecondary and invest in primary health care service for kids and young adults in schools.
As evidenced by the work of the Growing Michigan Together Council, we need to more fully fund our universities and community colleges in order to develop the talent of our state and attract young people from all over the world. As chair of the House Appropriations Joint Capital Outlay Subcommittee, I’m excited to say the signing of these bills does just that. By investing in the infrastructure of our higher education campuses, we begin to make Michigan a more competitive state.
- Kwanzaa: Dec. 26-Jan. 1
- New Year’s Day: Jan. 1
- Virtual Town Hall: Jan. 12
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: Jan. 15
- Community Conversation: Jan. 29