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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

Bumstead partners with AT&T to donate supplies to local schools

In late August, state Rep. Curt VanderWall and I had the pleasure of dropping off 125 backpacks to the Mason County Central School District in preparation for students coming back to school. The backpacks were donated by AT&T and filled with school supplies so students in need can have access to the tools needed to help them excel in their studies — 50 backpacks were given to Scottville Elementary School, 50 more went to Mason County Elementary and 25 were given to Mason County Sheriff’s Department of School Resource Officers to distribute at their discretion.

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Important back to school information

• The Michigan Department of Education has updated A Parent’s Guide to Personal Curriculum: Focus on Students with an IEP. The personal curriculum can support students with an individualized education plan by modifying Michigan Merit Curriculum standards and credits, making it possible to achieve a high school diploma.
• The U.S. Department of Education requires that intermediate school districts and local education agencies, as a condition of receiving funds under any portion of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965 as amended, receive an annual certification that it has no policy that prevents or otherwise denies participation in constitutionally protected prayer in public schools. A district’s failure to submit the required certification may result in the district’s loss of funding under ESEA. Certifications are due on or before Sept. 22.
Public Law 108-447 requires all educational institutions who receive federal funds to hold an educational program about the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17. Since Constitution Day falls on a Sunday this year, schools must hold a program immediately before or after Sept. 17.
• All Michigan K-12 schools are eligible to obtain free air purifiers through the MI Safe School Indoor Air Ventilation program. Air purifiers are provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Epidemiology Laboratory Capacity Reopening Schools grants. For more information or to submit a request, visit the MI Safe Schools Indoor Air Ventilation Program Request Form.

Back-to-school safety tips

As students head back to school, it is a great time to review bus safety tips. If your students ride the bus, make sure they are familiar with the proper safety procedures for getting on and off the bus. The Michigan State Police offer these safety tips for students:

• Always stay in sight of the bus driver.
• Don't hurry off the bus; check traffic first.
• Never go back to the bus after exiting.

It is even more important that drivers know how to safely share the road with school buses. When encountering a school bus, drivers should always:

• Prepare to stop when a slowing bus has its overhead yellow lights flashing.
• Stop at least 20 feet away from buses when red lights are flashing, unless driving in the opposite direction on a divided highway.
• Slow down in or near school and residential areas.
• Watch for children between parked cars and other objects.

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New laws to recruit and retain teachers and counselors

A package of bills first introduced in the Senate to help Michigan schools recruit and retain teachers and counselors was recently signed into law.

Public Act 110 of 2023 aims to address the teacher shortage by expanding the pool of teachers eligible to teach in Michigan schools. This will allow schools to hire teachers with out-of-state certifications and gives educators the opportunity for career advancement by expanding the ways they can earn an advanced teaching certificate.

Public Act 111 of 2023 expands the pool of school counselors by allowing qualified counselors to forgo the guidance counselor’s exam and reducing the requirements to work in Michigan for school counselors from other states.

Family-friendly fishing

Michigan is home to 26,266 inland lakes, 76,439 miles of rivers and streams and more than 150 different fish species. With so many options, the most difficult decision will be where to go!

The DNR offers an interactive “Family Friendly Fishing Waters” map to help identify family-friendly fishing locations across the state. Sites can be filtered by answering questions like what kind of fishing would you like to do, and which amenities do you need?

Each of these locations are easy to access and have a high likelihood of catching fish. Once a location has been selected, a simple click provides site-specific details like the species of fish you can expect to find, restroom availability and descriptions, and even driving directions.

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Invasive species watch list updated

Two new species have been added to Michigan’s invasive species watch list, the mountain pine beetle and the water-primrose.

The mountain pine beetle is a deadly threat to pine trees. It is an aggressive, persistent, and destructive bark beetle and is native to western North America, ranging from Northern Mexico to Canada and eastward to the Black Hills of South Dakota. The beetle can be transported on infested trees, logs, lumber, firewood or plant parts, and poses an immediate threat to Michigan’s natural resources and forest products industry.

If you find suspected signs of mountain pine beetle on pine trees, note the location and take photos. Report your findings to either the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development via email at [email protected] or the Midwest Invasive Species Information Network using its online reporting tool.

Invasive water-primrose is a non-native plant that is invasive in a wetland ecosystem. The species can survive and thrive in Michigan’s climate and can be very difficult to remove, making early detection critical. Water-primrose species are aquatic plants that can thrive and spread in shallow water areas, including wetlands and shorelines. Water-primrose will grow quickly, crowding out important native vegetation. Suspected water-primrose sightings can be reported through the Midwest Invasive Species Information Network online reporting tool.

Game-specific hunting guides available for download

Each year, the DNR publishes regulation guides for hunting and fishing in Michigan. The Michigan hunting and fishing guides provide a condensed collection of the rules and regulations, including the boundaries of each of the management units for individual species. Guides are available for general hunting and fishing or game-specific guides for games like bear, elk, and turkey, and can be downloaded to your mobile device.

A hunting and fishing app is also available for download. The Michigan DNR Hunt Fish app provides access to licenses, permits, regulations, map drawing results, along with outdoor recreation updates.

Bumstead highlights upcoming events in the 32nd District

Sleeping Bear Dunes – Junior Ranger Angler Program
Friday, Sept. 1
10 a.m. — 2 p.m.
Loon Lake Picnic Area
Scenic Highway
Description: Stop by Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore for a day of festivities aiming to provide safe and barrier-free opportunities to engage youth, primarily kindergarten through fifth graders, in fishing! More information here.
Archibald Jones Day – Lowering of Crystal Lake 150th Anniversary
Monday, Sept. 4
10 a.m. — noon
Description: The celebration of Archibald Jones Day will be held on Sept. 4 in Beulah in conjunction with the Cold Creek Bridge Walk, which will begin at 10 a.m. at the bridge over Cold Creek on Lake Street. More information here.
White Lake Area Labor Day Community Walk
Monday, Sept. 4
10 — 11 a.m.
Montague Trailhead Pavilion
Spring and Water streets
Description: The White Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, along with the cities of Montague and Whitehall will host the 17th Annual Labor Day Community Walk. More information here.
Silver Lake Sand Dunes Apple and BBQ Festival
Sept. 8 — 9
2 — 9 p.m. and 9 a.m. — 9 p.m. 
Silver Lake Sand Dunes
Description: Around 13,000 visitors from all over Michigan, and the country, flock to Silver Lake to enjoy freshly smoked barbeque from the masters, live entertainment, shopping, and classic autos and ORVs at the Silver Lake Sand Dunes Apple and BBQ Festival. More information here.
Association of Great Lakes Maritime History Conference
Saturday, Sept. 9
8 a.m. — 8 p.m.
Mason County Research Center
130 E. Ludington Ave.
Description: Hear multiple presentations and round table discussions on the history of Great Lakes Maritime. More information here.  
Plant Diagnostic Clinic at Benzonia Library
Tuesday, Sept. 12
11 a.m. — 2 p.m.
Benzonia Public Library Porch
891 Michigan Ave.
Description: Bring your bugs, weeds, and plant diseases, for identification and recommendations! MSU Extension will once again host a plant diagnostic clinic at the Benzonia Public Library. Staffed by MSUE employees and extension master gardeners. More information here.
Noah Project Annual Yard Sale
Sept. 14 — 16
8 a.m. — 5 p.m.
Muskegon County Fairgrounds
6621 Heights Ravenna Road
Description: Thousands of treasures will be available for purchase at Noah Project’s annual yard sale. All proceeds go to support the shelter. More information here.
Western Michigan Old Engine Club Antique Tractor Pull
Saturday, Sept. 16
10 a.m. — 2 p.m.
700 S. Scottville Road
Description: Admission to spectators is free of charge. Events typically last three to four hours depending on the number of participants, track and weather conditions. More information here.  
Tricks and Treats Fall Fest
Sunday, Sept. 17
Michigan Adventures Amusement Park
4750 Whitehall Road
Description: Families big and small will delight at experiencing the park in an entirely new season, with decorations, fall activities and entertainment specifically designed for this new spooky, kooky Halloween event. More information here.
Benzie Chamber Off the Clock
Tuesday, Sept. 19
5 — 7 p.m.
Lake Ann Brewing Company
6535 First St.
Lake Ann
Description: Enjoy a night of networking with other chamber members and residents. More information here.
West Shore Business and Economic Summit
Wednesday, Sept. 20
1 — 4 p.m.
West Shore Community College Arts and Science Building
3000 North Stiles Road
Description: West Shore Community College, the Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce, the Mason County Chamber Alliance, and West Shore Bank invite you to the West Shore Business and Economic Summit. More information here.
Manistee Chamber UnTapped 
Thursday, Sept. 21
5 — 7 p.m.
Blue Fish Kitchen and Bar
312 River St.
Description: Reconnect with friends and colleagues at Chamber UnTapped sponsored by Filer Credit Union, The Talon Group, Amazon Hub, RE/MAX Bayshore Manistee, and Blue Fish Kitchen + Bar. More information here.
Buttermilk Creek Park Nature Trail Grand Opening
Saturday, Sept. 23
1 p.m.
Buttermilk Creek Park
4607 Spring St.
Description: The city of Montague celebrates the grand opening of the accessible nature trail recently installed at Buttermilk Creek Park. More information here.
Pentwater Fall Festival – Arts, Crafts and Antiques
Sept. 23 —24
10 a.m. — 3 p.m.
Village Green
231 S. Hancock St.
Description: Join us for the Annual Fall Fest Arts and Crafts Show. Artisans gather on the Village Green to showcase their product. Stop by and do some shopping! More information here.
Mason County Developers Day
Tuesday, Sept. 26
9 a.m. — 2 p.m.
Lakeshore Resource Network
920 E. Tinkham Ave.
Description: Highlighting some development and redevelopment sites in Mason County, both residential and commercial. We will share results of our recent Housing Needs Assessment and provide information on state and local incentives for development. More information here.
Mason County Chamber Alliance Business After Hours
Thursday, Sept. 28
5 — 7 p.m.
The 10 Spot
5750 U.S. 10
Description: The food truck owners at The 10 Spot are our hosts for Business After Hours. Join the Chamber for Business After Hours, featuring food, drinks and door prizes! More information here.
Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber Breakfast
Friday, Sept. 29
7:30 — 9 a.m.
Maranatha Bible and Missionary Conference
4759 Lake Harbor Road
Norton Shores
Description: This month’s topic will be “Michigan’s Beach Towns and How they Drive Regional Economy.” More information here.

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

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