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Serving the people of Macomb County is very important to me, and I encourage you to contact me with any state issue. You may email [email protected] or call toll-free at 1-866-303-0110. 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,

Michael D. MacDonald
State Senator

Nearly 1,000 residents attend tele-town hall

I recently discussed issues facing Michigan and Macomb County with nearly 1,000 area residents during a tele-town hall meeting.

A tele-town hall meeting is a telephone conference that provides a forum for hundreds of Macomb County families and job providers to share their goals and concerns and hear about what we are doing to improve our state. I want to thank everyone who participated and encourage those who were unable to join in on the conversation to contact my office and let us know their priorities.

During this event, several residents asked me direct questions on a series of important issues, including auto insurance reform, animal protections, the county jail and several road funding ideas.

Participants were also able to submit responses to five poll questions, such as whether they support Gov. Whitmer’s plan to have the state borrow money through bonding to fix highways. On road bonding, most people said that the state already has enough money to fix the roads or that the state should focus on local roads first. When asked if they would support a proposal to create a new tax to raise money for mass transit, 82% of the participants said no.

Pocketbook issues are still the top priorities for Macomb families, specifically more legislative oversight and refinancing our debts to help invest in roads.

If you were unable to attend the tele-town hall and would like you share your viewpoint on issues facing Macomb County and our state, please contact my office toll-free at 1-866-303-0110 or via email at [email protected]

Property tax assessment appeal workshop

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This week, I held a “How to appeal your property tax” workshop with Macomb County Commissioner Leon Drolet at the Clinton-Macomb Public Library — North Branch in Macomb Township.

Our local assessors do their best to accurately determine a home’s value with the information they have, but the process is not perfect. However, homeowners who believe their assessments are in error may appeal them.

We had a great turnout for our workshop to help guide people through the appeal process, and I want to thank Commissioner Drolet for his excellent presentation.

Homeowners who were unable to attend the workshop can download a useful packet on “How to Effectively Appeal Your Property Tax Assessment” from the Publications section of our Senate website. The packet is provided at no charge and is designed to help make the property tax appeal process less confusing and more effective.

Bills would reduce medical costs, increase access

The Senate has approved my legislation as part of a five-bill package to cut unnecessary red tape, reduce costs and improve access to medical care in Michigan. Senate Bill 674 would repeal the certificate of need requirement for air ambulance services.

Access to modern emergency services like air ambulances can mean the difference between life and death. We should be doing what we can to help health care providers offer lifesaving medical services. My bill would eliminate burdensome regulations for air ambulances and help increase the availability of these critical services for Michigan and Macomb families.

An air ambulance is a helicopter specially outfitted to transport injured or sick people in a medical emergency. It is used in situations in which a conventional ground ambulance would be unreasonable or unsuccessful. Although the Federal Aviation Administration regulates and oversees the operation of air ambulances, as of 2016, Michigan was one of only five states that also regulated air ambulances under CON laws.

A certificate of need (CON) is an authorization that enables the establishment or expansion of health care facilities or services in Michigan. A commission appointed by the governor oversees the CON standards, which regulates a variety of specialized medical services and proposed increases in the number of hospital, nursing home and psychiatric beds.

Four other bills in the package were also approved. SB 669 would eliminate covered capital expenditures from the CON process. SBs 672 and 673 would repeal the CON requirement for psychiatric beds and would require, as a condition of licensure, a psychiatric hospital or psychiatric unit to accept public patients and maintain 50% of beds available to public patients. SB 671 would add two new public members to the CON commission and make it easier to appoint members to standard advisory committees.

Free taxpayer guide available online

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Macomb residents who haven’t already filed their taxes and would like some helpful information can download a free taxpayer’s guide from my website.

The Michigan Taxpayer’s Guide is a reference for the 2019 tax year and is designed to help you prepare your state tax returns. Although not a substitute for state tax instruction booklets, the guide contains information on the state individual income tax and details about 2020 Michigan property taxes and various tax credits, such as the homestead property tax credit and the home heating credit.

Taxpayers can view and download the state forms and instructions for the 2019 tax year at www.michigan.gov/taxes, and you can e-file your state returns at www.mifastfile.org.

Coffee hour on March 2

I continue to hold district coffee hours on the first Monday and third Friday of every month to hear directly from the people.

Our next scheduled coffee hour is Monday, March 2 from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at Panera Bread, located at 36808 Van Dyke Ave. in Sterling Heights. The coffee hour is open to residents to express their opinions or concerns about state government or to request assistance with a state issue. No appointment is necessary.

If you are unable to attend the coffee hour, please contact my office toll-free at 1-866-303-0110 or via email at [email protected].

Bipartisan aerospace and defense caucus meeting

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Earlier this month, Rep. Joe Tate, D-Detroit, and I co-chaired a meeting of the bipartisan Michigan Legislative Aerospace and Defense Caucus in Sterling Heights. It was great to welcome 40 people to Macomb County to hear about the ongoing efforts to increase the role of the aerospace and defense industries in our region and the entire state.

I want to thank everyone who participated and our keynote speaker Vicki Selva, who is the executive director of the Michigan Defense Center and discussed the current status of defense and aerospace industries and infrastructure in Michigan and the center’s plans to encourage increased federal investment and business growth.

We also heard from Brad McNett of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command, Ground Vehicle Systems Center Ground Systems Cyber Engineering Department on their work and the future of cyber engineering and ground systems.

Among those attending the meeting were Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist; Maj. Gen. Paul Rogers, adjutant general of the Michigan Army and Air National Guard; Sen. Paul Wojno, D-Warren; Rep. Shane Hernandez, R-Port Huron; Rep. Nate Shannon, D-Sterling Heights; Rep. Jeff Yaroch, R-Richmond; and Rep. Lori Stone, D-Warren.

 

Michigan's 10th Senate District

The 10th District includes the city of Sterling Heights, Macomb Township and most of Clinton Township.

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Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the State Senate. 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 10th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.


 
Senator Michael D. MacDonald
4200 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

 
Visit my website at: SenatorMichaelMacDonald.com