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State budget approved, includes funding for numerous U.P. projects

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Numerous Upper Peninsula projects will benefit from funding I fought to secure in the recently approved fiscal year 2022 budget, which the governor signed on Wednesday.

I am pleased lawmakers and the governor were able to come together on a bipartisan budget that is on time and balanced without raising taxes. The budget increases funding for programs and services U.P. residents rely on every day, like more money for our classrooms, job training programs, repairing and protecting dams and bridges, and securing our cities by hiring new state troopers and corrections officers. In addition, I worked to include millions to repair damaged trails and infrastructure in the district.

Senate Bill 82, the general omnibus budget bill approved by lawmakers this week, includes millions in state funding for flood repairs throughout the 38th District.

The Houghton Trail Flood Repair project is set to receive $4 million to complete necessary funding for the restoration of the highly popular trail system between Dollar Bay and Lake Linden damaged by the Fathers’ Day Flood of 2018. The trail’s restoration will be important to recreational users, especially for snow machines and ATVs, as well as for area businesses that rely on tourists and users coming to the area to use the trail.

The Houghton County Road Commission and the cities of Houghton and Hancock will receive $2.31 million, $320,200, and $235,000, respectively, to repay debts incurred for similar flood repair projects.

Additionally, $1.5 million was secured in the budget from the Permanent Snowmobile Trail Easement fund to acquire 87.2 miles of trails in Marquette and Baraga counties from Lyme Timber.

Other highlights from the FY22 budget include:

o $1.4 billion to lower rates and recruit more childcare workers,
o $414.5 million to permanently increase wages for direct care workers,
o $190 million to repair or replace local bridges,
o $40 million for the Going Pro program to support employee training,
o $33 million to train new state police troopers and corrections officers, and
o $25 million for Futures for Frontliners.

The plan also deposits $500 million in the state’s rainy-day fund and $150 million in the unemployment trust fund to increase its solvency due to fraudulent benefit payments.

The Senate also approved House Bill 4400, a higher education focused budget bill that includes increases for community colleges and public universities and $86 million to reduce university MPSERS obligations, which will help Northern Michigan University and Michigan Technological University and builds on the $140 million in the already signed K-12 budget to reduce school unfunded liabilities.

The new fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

Pure Michigan fall color map

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Fall in Michigan is magical. The temperatures drop, local farms and orchards display their bounty and the trees begin to change color. Across the state the leaves transform from green to red, orange and yellow - first slowly and quietly then suddenly in a final explosion of color.

To help you plan your color tour through the state, check out the Pure Michigan fall color map. This interactive tool gives fall color seekers information to find the best locations for fall foliage throughout the state!

Nominate your ’22-’23 Michigan Teacher of the Year

The Michigan Teacher of the Year program has recognized outstanding teachers in our state since 1952. Michigan’s Teacher of the Year serves as a representative and advocate for Michigan's more than 90,000 teachers and works with nine fellow regional teachers of the year to make up the Michigan Teacher Leadership Advisory Council. Each Regional Teacher of the Year brings recognition to the district he or she represents and has additional opportunities for professional development and opportunities to share their experience and expertise. The Michigan Teacher of the Year also attends the State Board of Education meetings as a non-voting member and serves as Michigan’s applicant for National Teacher of the Year.

For more information about the Michigan Teacher of the Year program, click here. Nominations are now open and can be made using the online form.

Free PPE Available for Schools

The state of Michigan currently has personal protective equipment available at no cost for schools and ISDs in Michigan. Items are designated for use in protecting against COVID-19 and will be disbursed on a first-come, first-served basis. Available items include:

• Face Coverings/Protective Masks
• Disposable Gowns (adult size S, M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL and one size fits all)
• Gloves – (Small, Medium, or Large)
• Face Shields

For questions or to request additional PPE, please email the Department of Technology, Management and Budget with quantities desired at [email protected].

New pedestrian bridge at Lower Tahquamenon Falls

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On Sept. 8, a 6-foot-wide aluminum bridge was installed at the Lower Tahquamenon Falls at Tahquamenon Falls State Park. Contractors used a helicopter to lift four sections of a new 142-foot-long pedestrian bridge into place.

The bridge, part of a larger project intended to give access to an island at the Lower Falls, will allow improved access for visitors, park staff and emergency services. Additional components of the project include 350 feet of boardwalk connecting the mainland to the bridge, a half-mile, barrier-free pathway around the perimeter of the island, as well as benches and additional boardwalk areas on the island.

Great Start Readiness Program expansion

The Michigan Legislature continued its strong tradition of support for early childhood education with a significant investment of $168 million in the Great Start Readiness Program as part of the 2021-22 state budget.

Michigan’s nationally recognized Great Start Readiness Program provides high-quality education opportunities for vulnerable preschool aged children. This additional investment will allow the Michigan Department of Education to further expand the program and make full- or part-day preschool available to families at or below 250% of the federal poverty level.

Click here for a list of Intermediate School Districts or a Great Start Readiness Program in your county, as well as contact information and more detailed service information.

Fall Turkey Digest now available

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Fall turkey season is Sept. 15 through Nov. 14, 2021.

Information about fall turkey regulations, management units, hunting hours and more is available in the Fall Turkey Digest.

The digest, provided through the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, is a condensed collection of rules and regulations for hunters’ convenience and is available for download to your smartphone or mobile device.

Find fall turkey season dates, bag limits, hunting regulations and hours, a place to hunt and more.

Michigan's 38th Senate District

The 38th State Senate District includes the counties of Alger, Baraga, Delta, Dickinson, Gogebic, Houghton, Iron, Keweenaw, Marquette, Menominee, Ontonagon, and Schoolcraft in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula.

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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 38th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.

Senator Ed McBroom
7200 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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