Senator Jim Stamas E-Newsletter

Serving You
Serving the constituents of the 36th Senate District is very 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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Winter in Michigan offers tourists and residents some outstanding recreational opportunities. I recently took a snowmobile tour throughout Northern Michigan with legislators and the Michigan Snowmobile Association. It was a great time, and I encourage people to get out and enjoy one of our state's many snowmobiling and cross-country skiing trails.

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Congratulations to the Adams Elementary School robotics team for their second-place finish at the First LEGO League state championship and for qualifying for the world championship in Detroit in April. I recently had the chance to meet with these amazing fifth-graders. Teams research a real-world problem and are challenged to develop a solution. The Adams team project focuses on understanding E. coli and septic tanks.

Burgess memorial highway bill sent to governor
It is important for us to remember and honor the courage and selflessness of heroes like Lance Cpl. Ryan Burgess. Ryan was a dedicated and fearless Marine who loved his family and his country. Unfortunately, he was killed by an improvised explosion device during his second tour in Iraq in December 2006.

As a way for us to remember his loss and express our appreciation for his service and sacrifice, my legislation to permanently honor Ryan is on its way to the governor's desk to be signed.

Senate Bill 481 will designate a portion of U.S. 10 from N. Stark Road to N.W. River Road in Sanford as the "Marine Lance Corporal Ryan Burgess Memorial Highway."

Ryan was a graduate of Meridian High School and his parents, Jon and Kim Burgess, spoke before the Senate Transportation Committee in December in support of the bill.  [read more]

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Governor outlines 2019 budget plan
Gov. Rick Snyder recently presented his proposed fiscal year 2019 state budget to the Legislature. I chair the Senate general government budget subcommittee, and we have already started reviewing the governor's plan. I encourage you to share your concerns and thoughts with me.

The governor's budget outline focuses on continuing our economic recovery, meeting our pressing challenges, providing essential services and building a brighter future for all Michigan families.

I support the governor's plan to once again increase K-12 education funding to record levels. The proposed boosts in the per-pupil foundation allowance and career and technical education will help ensure every student receives an education that prepares them for success. As our economy continues to grow and create jobs, I also support the governor's call for a greater investment in helping every resident achieve the American dream here in Michigan.

While this is just the beginning of the budget process, I am confident that we will once again pass a balanced budget that supports our students, fixes our roads and protects our communities while making government more efficient and effective. For more information visit www.mi.gov/mibudget.

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Enjoy free winter fishing this weekend!
Michigan residents and out-of-state visitors can enjoy fishing on both inland and Great Lakes waters on Feb. 17-18. All fishing license fees are waived for the two days, yet all other fishing regulations still apply.

Visit www.michigan.gov/freefishing for information on special events and activities. A state Recreation Passport will not be required at any state park or recreation area during the free fishing weekend.

Winter fishing has its own set of safety rules. Click here for ice safety tips, including what to know when venturing out on the ice or if you fall through the ice.

Free tax preparation guide available online
It is important for residents to have reliable, updated information when preparing their annual taxes. Residents who are getting ready to file their taxes or want current information can download the Michigan Taxpayer's Guide 2018 from my website.

The easy-to-use booklet is a reference for the 2017 tax year and can help take some of the confusion out of preparing their state tax returns. I encourage residents of the 36th Senate District to review this valuable resource concerning Michigan's income tax, property taxes and tax credits.

The guide is meant as a helpful resource and not as a substitute for Michigan Department of Treasury tax instruction booklets. The federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act went into effect on Jan. 1, 2018 and does not affect individual income taxes for 2017. Click here to download the guide.

Helping first-time homebuyers
To encourage young people and new families to come to Michigan and settle in our state, it's important that housing is affordable for the next generation of homebuyers.

That is why I supported legislation that would help residents save enough money to buy their first house. Senate Bill 511 would create a first-time homebuyer savings plan. Funds in the account could be used toward a down payment or allowable closing costs. SB 512 would provide an income tax deduction of up to $5,000 for a single return and $10,000 for a joint return for contributions and interest earned.

I will keep you updated as we work to increase property values while also helping attract new talent and investment to our state.

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
201 Townsend Street Suite #5200
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

Visit my website at: www.SenatorJimStamas.com

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