As we enter the spring season, we have been hard at work in the Legislature passing important policies and developing the state budget that will fund our priorities across Michigan! In this newsletter, you’ll find an update on the progress of the state budget, financial resources, upcoming events, and more.
It has been a busy few weeks at the Capitol for the state budget process, known as the Appropriations process. I serve as the Chair of the Licensing and Regulatory Agency (LARA)/Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) Appropriations Subcommittee and Chair of the Labor and Economic Development (LEO)/Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) Appropriations Subcommittee, where I am tasked with considering Governor Whitmer’s executive recommendation, crafting my own recommendations, and passing the budgets through the subcommittee process. Over the last two weeks, I was proud to pass both the LARA/DIFS and LEO/MEDC budgets out of my subcommittees. Highlights of these proposed budgets include:LEO/MEDC
In addition to chairing the LEO/MEDC and LARA/DIFS subcommittees, I also serve as a member of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Pre-K-12 subcommittees, and the full Appropriations committee. I will continue to provide updates on the budget process as we work toward passing a state budget that is reflective of our priorities and best serves every Michigan resident!
Coffee and Conversation
My next Coffee and Conversation is this Saturday, April 29th in Redford! I’ll be joined by a representative from Michigan Works! Livonia American Job Center to discuss workforce resources and opportunities.
I’ll share the latest legislative and budget updates from Lansing and discuss the issues most important to you. We hope to see you there!
When: Saturday, April 29, from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PMWhere: Redford Township District Library | Meeting Room B, 25320 Six Mile Rd, Redford Twp, MI 48240
Incoming College Students: Fill out your FAFSA!
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) deadline is approaching soon. The deadline is May 1, 2023, to be given priority consideration for some Michigan financial aid programs. Filling out your FAFSA can save you thousands of dollars a year off the cost of community, private, or public college. You can unlock grants, scholarships, and other assistance to put you on the path to higher education right here in Michigan.
One of the new ways you can save money is the Michigan Achievement Scholarship, a bipartisan scholarship we established last year to lower the cost of community, private, or public college by thousands of dollars a year—up to $27,500 over 5 years—for the majority of graduating seniors. All you need to do to qualify for the Michigan Achievement Scholarship is fill out your FAFSA—that’s it. You are probably eligible for more financial aid than you realize, and it is encouraged you fill out your FAFSA as soon as possible!
Helping Medicaid members keep their coverage
Take action to avoid a gap in coverage
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government declared a Public Health Emergency (PHE), allowing Medicaid members to keep their health care coverage. Per recent federal legislation, eligibility renewals will start again in June. Monthly renewal notifications will be sent by mail beginning in May.
Following these steps will help determine if you still qualify:
- Make sure your contact information is up to date.
- Check mail or text messages for a letter.
- Complete your renewal form (if you get one).
If you’re a Medicaid member, learn more about how these changes may affect your health care coverage at Michigan.gov/2023benefitchanges.
$4.7 million available to help Michigan businesses address talent shortages
The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) has released a competitive Request for Proposals to support the development of new, or the enhancement of existing, employer-led collaboratives throughout the state. $4.7 million in grant awards are available to organizations through the Sector Strategies Employer-Led Collaborative initiative.
An employer-led collaborative is a group of businesses coming together to solve a common or shared workforce problem. Employer-led collaboratives bring together employers, education and training institutions, workforce development organizations and other applicable partners such as economic development organizations and government, to create solutions to fill identified talent gaps.
Successful applicants should focus on priority occupations that support the federal government’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Priority will be given to occupations in the fields of construction and extraction; installation, maintenance and repair; production; and transportation and material moving. Proposals from other key industries in Michigan with a focus on agri-business; energy; healthcare; information technology; manufacturing (outside of Automobile and mobility); and outdoor recreation/hospitality are also eligible to apply. LEO anticipates funding 10-20 awardees with one-time grants ranging from $150,000 to $500,000.
There are currently more than 60 formally identified employer-led collaboratives throughout Michigan. LEO creates statewide policy and provides technical assistance to support the activities of employer-led collaboratives.
Requests for Proposal submissions are due by Monday, May 8, 2023, with awards announced on June 23, 2023. To learn more and apply, click here.
Did you know that not having a bank or credit union account can cost you $3,000 or more a year?
Michiganders without an account at a bank or credit union spend an average of $3,000 per year on fees for check cashing, money orders, bill pay services, third-party debit cards, and more. Avoiding those costs is one of the many reasons that it is important to have a relationship with a financial institution.
One way to avoid those costs is to get a certified account through the Michigan Open Account Coalition (MOAC). MOAC enables Michiganders to get a certified no- or low-fee account at one of nearly 30 banks and credit unions with more than 1,000 branch locations throughout the state. These accounts are easy to understand, user-friendly, and have no surprise or hidden fees, and they give Michiganders access to services like direct deposit, debit cards, and online bill pay.
In addition to helping Michiganders save money, MOAC accounts offer an opportunity to build a relationship with a financial institution. This can help you secure financial services like auto and home loans, a vital step toward long-term financial security.
For more information on MOAC, and to find a certified low- or no-cost bank or credit union account option, visit Michigan.gov/DIFSOpenAccount.
Women in Blue Event in Lansing
This month, I was joined by the MDP Women’s Caucus for their annual Women in Blue event in Lansing! Along with my colleagues Senator Jeremy Moss and Senator Mallory McMorrow, it was a wonderful day celebrating these inspirational women as they planned future leadership and service opportunities for women leaders from Southeast Michigan.
City of Detroit Motor City Makeover
The City of Detroit’s Motor City Makeover starts in May! Sign-up here to help block clubs, community groups and other organizations beautify Detroit neighborhoods. Beautification and clean-up projects will take place three Saturdays in May by Council Districts:
- Saturday, May 6: Districts 1, 2, and 3
- Saturday, May 13: Districts 4 and 5
- Saturday, May 20: District 6 and 7
To find your District or contact your District Manager, click here.
Thank you again for your support. If I may ever be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 517-373-7748 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mary CavanaghState SenatorDistrict 6