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Dear Friends,

To better serve you, I am offering this e-newsletter on what’s happening in the 30th Senate District and across our state.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions about any of the content discussed in this e-newsletter or if I can be of assistance to you or your family. You may call toll-free at 1-855-347-8030 or email [email protected]. 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.

Working for you,

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Mark Huizenga
State Senator

Sponsoring financial disclosure bill

Last week, I sponsored financial disclosure legislation as part of a bipartisan bill package introduced to implement the transparency measures of Proposal 1 of 2022.

When the people of Michigan passed Proposal 1 last year, they overwhelmingly said that they want a more open and accountable state government. This legislation is about upholding that principle and requiring more transparency from our elected leaders.

This bipartisan package will require the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and members of the Legislature to disclose certain financial information every year — which will help ensure public officials are not making decisions that personally benefit them.

Considering recent criminal corruption convictions in Michigan, this type of transparency is needed more than ever — if anything, to help restore the public’s trust.

Visit to Exalta Health

This year, I was very pleased to head the effort for Exalta Health to receive $1 million in grant funding that will allow them to continue their efforts in providing health and wellness service to those in need.

Since 1996, they have been dedicated to making health care and wellness accessible to all.

Based here in Grand Rapids, Exalta Health has worked with uninsured, under-insured and refugees to help create a healthier community. Click here or on the image below to see a video of my recent visit to this West Michigan company.

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Urging action on Line 5 permits

I recently joined 18 Senate members to send a letter to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Gen. Scott A. Spellmon, chief of engineers and commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, urging them to expedite the state and federal permitting processes required for the construction of the Great Lakes Tunnel Project for Line 5.

The Great Lakes Tunnel Project, originally scheduled to begin in 2021 and be operational in 2024, is critical to ensuring energy affordability and stability in Michigan. Now, a decision on permitting is not expected until at least 2026.

Michigan uses more propane for residential purposes than any other state, and more than half of that propane comes through Line 5.

Line 5 also provides jobs to over 6,000 Michigan residents and over $464 million in labor income. Tens of thousands of jobs are dependent upon Line 5 in downstream industries such as refineries, manufacturers, airports, and businesses that rely upon all the energy products coming from the line.

With winter around the corner, the millions of Michigan residents who rely on the propane from Line 5 to keep their families warm deserve better than continued delays from state and federal agencies. The Great Lakes Tunnel Project must be completed to protect this critical energy source.

Town hall meeting postponed

Due to Senate session going long on Thursday, I had to postpone my scheduled town hall meeting in Cascade Township. It will be rescheduled for a future date.

This town hall was put together as an opportunity to talk with West Michigan families about their goals and concerns and what we need to do to improve our state. That is still important, and members of my staff were available at the Wisner Center to talk with any constituents who had questions.

Until I am able to reschedule the town hall, anyone who has a question or a viewpoint they’d like to share on the future of our state is encouraged to contact my office.

Energy mandate is unrealistic

On Thursday, I opposed legislation to impose a 100% clean energy mandate in Michigan after several amendments to improve the bills — including two I proposed to protect schools and nonprofits — were not adopted.

I support using more new technologies to enhance and promote clean energy and protect our environment, but this plan simply goes too far. These bills would impose an unrealistic mandate on how Michigan producers provide the energy we need to cool our homes in the summer, light our homes at night and power our economy year-round.

While this clean energy package might sound good on paper, a 100% mandate — even one with a patchwork set of exemptions — will result in less-reliable energy at a greater cost to West Michigan families and job providers.

Senate Bills 271, 273 and 502 would reform Michigan’s energy laws to, among many things, mandate a 100% clean energy standard by 2040.

My amendments would have ensured the tax dollars invested in educating Michigan students stay where they belong — in the classroom — and also protect the vital work Michigan nonprofit organizations do every day by holding them harmless from any rate hikes under these bills.

Many nonprofits operate on a razor’s edge financially, and the last thing they can afford is a massive hike in their energy costs. Likewise, energy is a tremendous cost driver for schools, and now is certainly not the time to take vital resources from the classroom.

Happy Halloween!

Here are a few tips for a safe and fun Halloween. Drivers, even if you don’t celebrate the holiday, please stay alert and watch for trick-or-treaters.

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Fall yard cleanup

Fallen leaves and branches and flower beds that need to be cleared before the snow flies mean afternoons spent cleaning up our yards. While there are benefits to cutting branches before they are weighed down with snow and ice, there are also benefits to waiting until spring to fully clear out all the leaves. Here are a few tips for your annual fall cleanup:

“Leave the Leaves” — Leaving dead plant stems until 50 degree-days return will provide protection for perennial plants. The hollow spaces inside the stems give small critters and pollinators places to hibernate. Learn about the benefits of “leaving the leaves.”
Free mulch — Dead leaves will insulate plants and slow erosion, keep garden soil in place, and enrich next year’s garden. Turtles, toads, salamanders, moths, and butterflies all spend winter tucked under leaves.
Burn with care — Only burn natural materials like sticks, branches, and dried leaves. Although some local ordinances allow fallen leaves to be burned, most wildfires start when people lose control of burning yard waste. Never burn yard waste on a windy day and never leave a fire unattended.
Get a burn permit — Be mindful of local smoke and fire ordinances. Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula residents can view conditions at or call 866-922-2876 (866-922-BURN). Southern Michigan residents should check with their local municipality or fire department.

National Apple Month

Michigan is the third largest apple producer in the nation. With more than 14.9 million apple trees across 34,500 acres and 775 family-run farms throughout the state, apples are the largest and most valuable fruit crop in Michigan.

This year’s Michigan apple crop is expected to yield 32 million bushels – the second year in a row Michigan will harvest an above-average crop. Those apples will be sold at one of Michigan’s 150 farmers markets and cider mills in more than 12,000 retail grocery stores in 32 states and 18 countries.

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Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching are our nation’s highest honors given to teachers for K-12 science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Since the program was established by Congress in 1983, more than 5,200 teachers have been recognized for their contributions in the classroom.

Anyone — principals, teachers, parents, students, or members of the public — may nominate an exceptional science, technology, engineering, and mathematics teacher. Nominations for this year’s outstanding K-6 educators to receive the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching are now open.

Serving the people of West Michigan is very important to me and I encourage you to contact me with any state issues. You may contact me by calling toll-free 1-855-347-8030 or emailing [email protected].

I look forward to serving you, and I encourage you to contact me if I can assist you in any way or if you have an idea to help move our state forward.

Senator Mark Huizenga
201 Townsend St., Suite #7200
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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