Senator Jim Stamas E-Newsletter

Serving You
October is one of the best times to live in Michigan, especially if you can get out and see the fall colors. Serving the people of the 36th Senate District is important to me, and I encourage you to contact me with any state issues. You may call toll-free at 1-855-347-8036 or email SenJStamas@senate.michigan.gov. Also, please check out my Facebook page. Let me know if I can assist you in any way or if you have an idea to help move our state forward.

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Extremely disappointed with governor’s cuts
We delivered a responsible and balanced state budget on time that increased funding for roads and schools, and she virtually gutted it because it doesn’t include her massive $2.5 billion tax hike on Michigan families.

Although I’m happy the governor signed the budget with increased funding for K-12 education and drinking water protections, I am extremely disappointed with her nearly $1 billion in line-item vetoes. The governor’s reckless, punitive and partisan actions jeopardize public safety and public health, especially in our rural communities.

Upon signing the state budget, the governor issued a historic 147 line-item vetoes to cut nearly $950 million in funding approved by the Legislature, including:

• $375 million in additional road funding;
• $128 million from the K-12 school aid budget;
• $15 million in grants to local airports for PFAS and emerging contaminants;
• $34 million for mostly rural critical access hospitals;
• $17.5 million to train doctors needed in underserved rural communities;
• $16.6 million for rural hospitals that are the sole option in their communities;
• $8 million for OB-GYN services at rural hospitals;
• $13 million for county sheriff secondary road patrols; and
• $27 million in payments to rural communities in lieu of taxes on state-owned land.

The governor also eliminated funding for the Pure Michigan tourism promotion program, the Going Pro job training program and the county jail reimbursement program.

I was proud to work with Senate and House Appropriations committee members, who spent a tremendous amount of time putting together a smart budget for all Michigan families. Unfortunately, the governor walked out of the budget talks, cut nearly $1 billion on her own, and then circumvented our co-equal system of government by taking the unprecedented action of using an administrative board to move $625 million around without legislative or public input.

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Plenty of October hunting options in Michigan
Hunting has been a tradition for many Michigan families for generations, and I am committed to preserving our outdoor heritage. Michigan offers fantastic hunting opportunities that are a great way to help support area families and local businesses and protect our abundant wildlife and natural resources for years to come.

In addition to the current deer archery season, Michigan is rich with opportunities to hunt a variety of game birds this month. The 2019 hunting digest from the Department of Natural Resources — with all current Michigan rules and regulations — can be found at www.michigan.gov/hunting.

Hunting seasons for ruffed grouse and woodcock are currently open, and the season for pheasant will open on Oct. 20 in the northern Lower Peninsula. The deer archery season and the ruffed grouse season run through Nov. 14 and then reopen from Dec. until Jan. 1. The woodcock season is open until Nov. 4.

Check out fall family activities at state parks
Michigan state parks offer plenty of family fun and adventure beyond the summer season. More than 30 state parks are hosting fall harvest festivals, including events at parks in Harrisville, East Tawas and Gaylord this weekend. Find out about upcoming events at www.michigan.gov/harvestsandhaunts.

The Harrisville State Park is hosting the Harrisville Haunted Halloween Weekend from Oct. 11 until Oct. 13. Visitors can enjoy activities such as children’s games, a site decorating contest, trick-or-treating, a haunted hayride and our spooky haunted trail.

On Oct. 11 and 12, the Tawas Point State Park is holding its annual Halloween harvest festival. Visitors are encouraged to come decorate their camp sites and immerse themselves in the family friendly haunted lighthouse. Other activities include painting pumpkins, hay rides and games.

For campers, the Otsego Lake State Park near Gaylord is hosting its Annual Halloween Harvest Fest Weekend Oct. 11-13. Festival activities begin Friday evening and continue through Sunday morning. Activities will include a site decorating contest, pumpkin painting, face painting, crafts and trick-or-treating. Reservations are recommended.

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Conservation officer training
There’s a special opportunity next summer for individuals interested in law enforcement and protecting Michigan’s natural resources. The Department of Natural Resources recently announced the 10th Conservation Officer Academy will begin July 12, 2020 at the Michigan State Police Training Academy in Dimondale.

During the 23-week academy, recruits will become state of Michigan employees and receive biweekly paychecks. Upon graduation, they will spend an extra 20 weeks training throughout the state. Find more information about the hiring process and requirements at www.michigan.gov/conservationofficers.

Roadside drug testing
Drug-impaired driving is a serious problem. In 2018, there were 247 drug-involved traffic fatalities in Michigan. Oct. 1 ushered in the start of an expanded statewide pilot program to get drug-impaired drivers off Michigan’s roads.

The Oral Fluid Roadside Analysis Pilot Program includes participation statewide from drug recognition experts (DREs), who are police officers highly trained to identify drivers impaired by drugs.

An initial five-county pilot program ended in November 2018 and provided valuable data. However, the sample size was too small, so the pilot program was expanded statewide. Under the program, a DRE can require a person to submit a preliminary oral fluid analysis, obtained by a mouth swab with a test instrument, to detect the presence of a controlled substance in the person’s body if the driver is suspected of drug impairment. Drugs tested for include: amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cannabis (delta 9 THC), cocaine, methamphetamines and opioids.

THE 36TH DISTRICT

Senate District 36 Map

The 36th Senate District is made up of 10 counties, which includes: Presque Isle, Otsego, Montmorency, Alpena, Oscoda, Alcona, Iosco, Arenac, Gladwin and Midland counties.

Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the 36th Senate District of Michigan. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Please feel free to forward this on to others who may be interested in receiving the 36th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website or via Facebook.

Senator Jim Stamas
100 N. Capitol Ave., Room S-324.
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

Visit my website at: www.SenatorJimStamas.com

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