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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Welcome to the most recent edition of my monthly e-newsletter!

Thank you for allowing me to represent you in the Michigan Senate. I am grateful each and every day to work for the people of the 32nd Senate District.

This email highlights the important work we have been doing in Lansing this past month.

Jon Bumstead
State Senator
32nd District

Governor’s short-sighted budget plan

The governor’s 2025 budget proposal is short-sighted and spends down our state’s budget surplus, revealing that she is out of touch with the families and residents of our state.

The Michigan Constitution requires that each new budget cycle begin with a proposal from the governor to the Legislature with his or her spending plan for the next fiscal year. The plan Gov. Whitmer recently presented to the Legislature relies upon Democrats’ $700 million income tax increase, redirects $670 million from the state’s teacher retirement plan to pay for more government spending and includes no real plan for long-term infrastructure investments.

At the beginning of 2023, Michigan had a record $9 billion surplus. One year later, the surplus is gone. Michigan families deserve a government that effectively spends their tax dollars on things like roads, students and public safety. They should not be forced to pay billions in government corporate handouts as they struggle to deal with higher grocery bills and energy prices.

As the minority vice chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I take my role very seriously when it comes to negotiating how our state allocates your tax dollars. As the Legislature continues working on the budget for this year, I will be working to invest in our future while bringing a fiscally sound budget to the people of Michigan.

MI Brighter Future

Despite record funding for schools, Michigan students continue to fall behind their peers in other states. My fellow senate Republican colleagues and I have a plan to improve childhood learning and support teachers in the state’s K-12 schools. The MI Brighter Future plan includes measures to help students gain access to additional resources and learning opportunities, require proven training methods for educators, give parents more control over their child’s progress, reinstate accountability in teacher evaluations, and provide for performance-based bonuses.

The four pillars of the MI Brighter Future plan are:

1. Set the bar high. Strengthen key provisions of the third-grade reading law, require student progress to be part of every teacher’s evaluation process once again, and restore the A-F grading scale for parents to easily understand how schools are performing.
2. The best teachers where they’re needed most. Provide bonuses to highly effective teachers who take positions in schools where they can have the biggest impact.
3. Give every kid a chance. No student should ever be left behind because of their means or ZIP code. Scholarship opportunities will help families afford additional educational assistance and help cover the costs of summer or after-school reading programs.
4. Back to the basics. Reading is the foundation of a successful education. But too many schools have gone away from teaching the basics and reading scores have plummeted. Our plan will ensure teachers are trained in proven phonics-based reading methods that have worked for decades.

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MI Reconnect

In 2019, Senate Republicans introduced bipartisan legislation to create the MI Reconnect Grant Act. The MI Reconnect program aims to close the skills gap and make post-secondary education more accessible to adults in Michigan seeking an associate degree or professional certificate.

The program was launched in February 2021, and since then, more than 150,000 Michiganders have benefited from the opportunity to achieve additional education or earn a professional certification. More than 32,000 Reconnect students have enrolled at a community or tribal college and more than 4,400 have earned credentials, putting them on the path to in-demand, higher-paying jobs in Michigan.

To learn more about the MI Reconnect or to apply, visit the program’s website.

Virtual education workforce job fair

The Michigan Department of Education has announced dates for two upcoming virtual job fairs.

Virtual job fairs are open to those who are looking for a job or looking to hire teachers, substitute teachers, bus drivers, custodians, paraprofessionals, secretaries, administrators and other education-related positions. The events will occur on Tuesday, March 19, and Wednesday, May 8. There is no cost to participate.

Job seekers will have the opportunity to connect with school districts across the state. Interested applicants can complete a profile and upload their resume before the event. Educational employers, including local education agencies, intermediate school districts, public school academies and staffing agencies, are able to host a virtual booth at no cost. Prior to the events, employers can view resumes and send chat invitations to eligible candidates.

Visit the MDE’s Education Workforce Job Fairs site for more information or to register for one of the events.

Carbon monoxide poisoning

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that is produced when wood, fuels, propane, or charcoal are burned. Carbon monoxide poisoning occurs when carbon monoxide builds up in the blood and can lead to serious tissue damage or even death.

The best way to keep your home safe is to install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in your home and follow these steps to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning:

• Clear away snow from the exhaust systems in your home.
• Clean your gas dryer regularly.
• Have your water heater inspected annually.
• Keep your chimney clear for proper ventilation.

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Summer park jobs available

Managers for Michigan’s state parks, boating facilities, and outdoor spaces are looking to fill 1,300 summer jobs. Roles include greeting visitors, answering questions, registering campers, cleaning park buildings, mowing grass, maintaining trails, and more.

These short-term summer positions are perfect for anyone interested in starting a career in natural resources. In fact, many DNR employees started their careers as summer park workers and have since transitioned to fulfilling roles as rangers, park supervisors, accountant assistants, and trail coordinators. Summer positions are also perfect for those looking to stay busy in retirement or anyone who wants to spend the summer outdoors.

The first step is to express interest, and share your contact information and your preferred work location. The hourly rate starts at $15, and schedules are flexible.

Muskegon High School football tribute presentation

State Rep. Will Snyder and I recently presented tributes to the Muskegon High School Football team in celebration of their 2023 Division 2 state championship title and to Head Coach Shane Fairfield in honor of his selection as the NFC recipient of the NFL’s 2023 High School Coach of the Year Award.

The Muskegon Big Reds took home the State title in a 33-21 victory over the two-time defending champions Warren De La Salle. With the State championship win, Muskegon High School secured their 900th all-time win since the state of their team in 1895 ― solidifying the Muskegon Big Reds as the winningest football program in Michigan state history.

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Bumstead highlights upcoming events in the 32nd District

39th Annual Spring Community Auction
Saturday, March 2
6 — 9 p.m.
Graystone Event Center
4079 W. US-10

Description: Enjoy several events, including live and silent auctions, games, prizes and more.
Learn more here.

Mason-Lake Conservation District Annual Dinner
Thursday, March 7
5 — 8 p.m.
Our Savior Lutheran Church
765 US-10

Description: Celebrate conservation in our community over the last year. Conservation District staff and partners will share information on the types of projects they have going on and will be available for questions. More information here.

Custer Bootscooters
Thursday, March 7
6 — 8:30 p.m.
Church of Christ Hall
3816 W. Fountain Road

Description: The line dancing group meets every week and is open to all ages. Learn more here.

Preschool Story Time with Miss Anne
Friday, March 8
10:30 — 11:30 a.m.
Benzonia Public Library
891 Michigan Ave.

Description: Join Miss Anne at the Benzonia Public Library for a children’s story time session. Learn more here.

Manistee Chamber Business Award Gala
Friday, March 8
5 — 11 p.m.
Little River Casino Event Center
2700 Orchard Highway

Description: Celebrate Manistee County businesses and business professionals! This elegant, formal evening includes cocktails and conversations, dinner, and dessert, followed by the annual Chamber of Commerce Awards Program. More information here.

Spring Carnival
Saturday, March 9
9 a.m. — 11 p.m.
Crystal Mountain
12500 Crystal Mountain Drive

Description: Celebrate spring the “up-north” way, with several different snow-themed activities. Learn more here.

Mason County Chamber Business After Hours
Wednesday, March 13
5 — 7 p.m.
Lakeshore Food Club
920 E. Tinkham Ave.

Description: Mason County’s premier networking event, “Business After Hours,” is held regularly to encourage professional networking in the community. This event will feature food, drinks and door prizes. More information here.

Benzie Area Chamber Annual Banquet and Award Celebration
Thursday, March 14
4:45 — 7:30 p.m.
Crystal Mountain, Northwest Territories Conference Room
12500 Crystal Mountain Drive

Description: The Benzie Area Chamber of Commerce hosts its Annual Banquet and Awards Celebration to give an update on 2023 progress and 2024 programs. Outstanding Business of the Year and Community Impact Award recipients will also be honored. More information here.
St Patrick’s Day Celebration with Cherish the Ladies
Friday, March 15
7:30 p.m.
Frauenthal Center
425 W. Western Ave.

Description: Join the Grammy-nominated Irish American music group for a traditional Irish music and dance performance. Learn more here.

Family Affair — Free Family Fun Event
Saturday, March 16
10 a.m. — 2 p.m.
Mason County Central High School
210 W. Broadway St.

Description: Mason County Central Schools presents interactive booths and classrooms full of activities and games for all ages. Learn more here.

Muskegon STARS! Community Orientation
Wednesday, March 20
1 — 5 p.m.
United Way of the Lakeshore
31 E. Clay Ave.

Description: Learn more about the Muskegon Lakeshore, along with unique festivals, events, and a chance to meet new people. Learn more here.

Business After Hours — Headshot Happy Hour
Thursday, March 21
4:30 — 6:30 p.m.
Wheelfish Group
700 Terrace Point Drive, Suite 200

Description: A professional networking event in Downtown Muskegon. Learn more here.

White Lake Community Business Expo
Saturday, March 23
8 a.m. — 12:30 p.m.
Whitehall High School
3100 W. White Lake Drive

Description: The 11th Annual White Lake Community Business Expo will be held in conjunction with the Montague-Whitehall Rotary Pancake Breakfast. The Expo, presented by the White Lake Area Chamber, is FREE to the public! More information here.
Retro Day
Saturday, March 23
Noon — 4 p.m.
Crystal Mountain
12500 Crystal Mountain Drive

Description: Participate in an afternoon of fun and activities while wearing some of your favorite retro and vintage clothing. Learn more here.

Pentwater Chamber Business After Hours
Thursday, March 28
5:30 — 7:30 p.m.
The Antler
283 S. Hancock St.

Description: Annual egg stuffing event with door prizes and light refreshments. More information here.

Community Easter Egg Hunt
Saturday, March 30
Noon — 1 p.m.
Oceana County Fairgrounds
1025 S. State St.

Description: The Hart/Silver Lake Community Easter Egg Hunt at the Oceana County Fairgrounds. The event will feature 10,000 plastic eggs with prizes divided into age categories, an Easter Bunny visit, a candy shoot, the Country Dairy cow mascot, and other family fun! More information here.

Easter on the Green
Saturday, March 30
Noon — 1 p.m.
Village Green
231 S. Hancock St.

Description: Bring your children and family to meet the Easter Bunny and enjoy an egg Hunt. The egg hunt begins at noon. More information here.

Opening Day of the Silver Lake State Park ORV Area
Monday, April 1
8 a.m. — 5 p.m.
Silver Lake State Park
8960 W. Fox Road

Description: The Silver Lake ORV area opens on April 1 and the season runs through Oct. 31 each year. More information here.

Senator Jon Bumstead
4600 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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