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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

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

Below you’ll find an update on some items we’ve been working on in Lansing.

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 33rd Senate District.


Rick Outman
State Senator
33rd Senate District


Reminder: March office hours this Thursday

I have two office hours meetings scheduled in Montcalm County on Thursday, March 31.

I will be available to answer questions and provide information and assistance, as well as take suggestions on issues affecting communities and businesses in the district.

Thursday’s office hours are scheduled for:

10 – 11 a.m. at Richland Township Hall, 8755 Third Ave. in Vestaburg

Noon – 1 p.m. at Edmore Village Office, 209 Sheldon St. in Edmore

Please feel free to stop in! No appointment is necessary.

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Outman supports resolution urging US energy independence

I supported Senate Resolution 114, a resolution urging policies that will lead to energy independence and lower energy costs in the United States, including ending the state’s efforts to shut down Line 5.

Efforts by the Whitmer and Biden administrations to crush domestic energy production are forcing gas prices to soar, inflation to rise and affecting the budget of every Michigan household. SR 114 urges the governor and Attorney General Nessel to “immediately cease their efforts to shut down the Line 5 pipeline and instead work proactively to lower energy costs for the residents of this state.”


Federal drinking water grants available

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced $20 million in grant funding to assist communities and schools with removing sources of lead from drinking water.

As part of the federal Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act, the EPA announced the availability of $10 million for projects to conduct lead service line replacements or implement corrosion control improvements and $10 million for projects that remove sources of lead in drinking water (e.g., fixtures, fountains, outlets and plumbing materials) in schools or childcare facilities.

This grant opportunity consists of a competitive, Request for Application process. Click on to apply. Applications are due by April 19, 2022. For more information on the WIIN grant programs please visit


Mt. Pleasant receives clean water grants

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) awarded grants that will help improve water quality in the city of Mount Pleasant.

As chair of the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality, I realize that these grants are a useful tool for local governments that help ensure residents have access to safe, clean water. The funding can be used for a number of upgrades and protective measures, and I am happy to see it going toward efforts that benefit 33rd District families.

The city of Mount Pleasant was presented with a $492,231 Drinking Water Asset Management (DWAM) grant.

DWAM is a one-time, $36.5 million grant program developed by EGLE that helps drinking water suppliers develop and update asset management plans, and/or develop a Distribution System Materials Inventory to identify materials that are part of the distribution system, such as lead service lines.

Mount Pleasant is one of six communities throughout the state to receive funding in this wave of grants.


$4.8 billion infrastructure repairs, reforms to UIA sent to governor

I recently supported legislation that would outline $4.8 billion in federal and state funding for necessary infrastructure and state park improvements, along with overhauls to the state’s troubled Unemployment Insurance Agency.

This plan makes major headway on some of the state’s most critically needed road and water improvement projects, while also setting aside one-time funds to improve the lives of Michiganders across the state.

Senate Bill 565 would use $4.1 billion in federal funding and $571 million in state resources to make important infrastructure investments across the state, including over $1.7 billion to help communities improve their drinking water and wastewater infrastructure — with at least 25% of drinking water funding dedicated to replacing lead pipes.

SB 565 also includes:

• $450 million to make infrastructure upgrades at state and local parks;
• Over $322 million in federal American Rescue Plan funds for small local governments;
• Nearly $317 million in federal funding to fixing aging roads and bridges;
• $250 million to rebuild destroyed or damaged dams and prioritize risk reduction projects at other dams in the state;
• $250 million to help improve broadband connectivity to more households and small businesses;
• $50 million to help install filtered water stations in schools;
• $60 million to help reduce PFAS or other contaminants from drinking water; and
• $35 million to fix failing septic systems.

In addition to much-needed infrastructure upgrades, funding approved as part of the effort would also invest nearly $140 million to improve service at the UIA to help Michigan workers who lost their jobs. The funding would go to improve customer service, enhance anti-fraud protection, and to reduce the backlog and improve timelines for issuing payments.

This was a unique opportunity for us to responsibly use resources to make transformative changes to the state that will benefit Michigan residents long into the future.


Outman disappointed in Whitmer’s veto of historic tax cuts

Earlier this month, the Michigan Legislature passed Senate Bill 768, a bipartisan plan to reduce the state’s personal income tax back to 3.9% and create a $500 tax credit for each child under the age of 19. The legislation also increased the tax deduction for seniors up to $40,000 for individuals and $80,000 for couples and lowered the age of eligibility from 67 to 62.

Unfortunately, on March 18, this historic legislation was vetoed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. At a time when the state is sitting on a multi-billion-dollar budget surplus, this measure would have provided significant relief to every Michigan resident. This plan would have helped Michiganders fill their gas tanks, feed their families, and heat their homes.

The veto of SB 768 marks the 100th bipartisan bill the governor has struck down during her term.


Legislation to alleviate substitute teacher shortage passes Senate

The Michigan Senate recently passed a bill to allow retired school employees to return to the classroom as substitute teachers after only four months. Current law requires them to wait at least one full year.

Senate Bill 726 would reduce the wait time from 12 to four months for retired school employees to return to work as a substitute teacher without impacting their retirement benefits. The bill also eliminates the cap on earnings for those who return to substitute teach for two years and eliminates the requirement that the district pay toward the unfunded liability in the retirement system on behalf of the retired employee.

SB 726 has been sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.


Leftover spring turkey licenses available for purchase

From Jan. 1 to Feb. 1, hunters in Michigan applied for one limited-quota license, for a specific spring turkey hunt unit during specific season dates. Drawing results were announced on March 7. Beginning March 21, leftover licenses became available for purchase.

Leftover spring turkey licenses and the Hunt 0234 license are available for purchase online at eLicense or at a license retailer.

Hunt 0234 is a guaranteed license that allows the holder to hunt the entire month of May on public and private lands statewide, except for public lands in Unit ZZ (southern Lower Peninsula). This license is valid to hunt Fort Custer military lands with permission.

Information about Hunt 0234 and spring turkey hunting is available in the 2022 Michigan Spring Turkey Digest.


Attention parents of new drivers!

ThinkFirst for Parents of Teen Drivers is a virtual 90-minute, evidence-based traffic safety program for parents of teen drivers. This program, supported by a grant from General Motors, is designed to educate parents on Michigan’s Graduated Driver Licensing law.

ThinkFirst, in partnership with the Michigan State Police, the Office of Highway Safety Planning, and several Michigan trauma centers, is offering this program to reduce new driver crashes and the resulting injuries.

The statewide program is available free of charge and sessions are offered via Zoom. To register click here.


April is Donate Life Month

Senate Resolution 120 was approved unanimously by the Michigan Senate to designate April as Donate Life Month in Michigan.

Donate Life Month will help to raise awareness about donation, encourage residents to register as organ, eye, and tissue donors, and honors those who have saved lives through the gift of donation.

One donor can save up to eight lives, restore sight to two people through cornea donation, and heal more than 75 others through tissue donation.

Michigan residents can register as an organ donor online or by visiting their local secretary of state’s office.

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Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the 33rd 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 33rd District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.

Senator Rick Outman
4400 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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