With Michigan’s winter weather finally upon us, I hope you are staying warm and staying safe. Even with the snow, I’ve been enjoying spending time connecting with constituents and discussing what they would like to see the Senate accomplish in 2024. Also, like many other Michiganders, I’ve been enjoying watching the Detroit Lions build upon an already historic season — onward to the conference championship!
In this newsletter, I wanted to take a moment to reach out and catch you up on the many things happening across our lakeshore district — including our upcoming events and some exciting news about the future of Selfridge Air National Guard Base. Also included below is some helpful information on local warming shelters and how to prepare for winter storms.
As always, I’d love to hear from you about the topics you’re interested in. Please feel free to reach out to my office to share your perspective or seek assistance with any challenges you may be facing with state departments — we are here to serve you. You can reach my office by calling (517) 373-7315 or emailing SenKHertel@senate.michigan.gov.
Thank you again for taking the time to read this newsletter — I hope to hear from you soon.
Included in This Newsletter
- Selfridge to Receive New KC-46 Squadron
- Community Update
- Helpful Resources
- Upcoming Events
- Contact Us
Selfridge to Receive New KC-46 Squadron
Selfridge Air National Guard Base is not only essential to our national security, but it also supports an estimated 5,000 jobs in the community and adds $850 million to our state’s economy. Currently, the base is home to the 127th Wing, including 21 A-10 Warthogs and eight KC-135 Stratotankers — however, the Air Force has announced plans to retire both projects in the coming years.
As Chair of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Military, Veterans and State Police, I have worked alongside state leaders and Michigan’s congressional delegation to find a new mission for the Harrison Township base. This effort includes securing $13 million in the 2024 state budget for Selfridge to expand their runway and make other updates necessary to remain competitive.
Earlier this month, we received some exciting news: Selfridge has been selected for a new squadron of KC-46A refueling tankers! This new opportunity helps ensure the base’s future, so that it can remain a source of community pride for years to come. Even with this good news, I still remain laser focused on securing a future fighter mission to replace the current A-10 Warthogs and ensure the base’s footprint does not diminish.
To learn more, click here.
Connecting with Constituents at Our First Coffee Hour of 2024
Thank you to everyone who braved the cold to attend our first coffee hour of 2024! The conversations held at these events help inform our work in Lansing and ensure we’re addressing the issues impacting our community. We have another one coming up on February 16 (more details below) — I hope you’ll be able to join us.
Presenting the St. Clair Shores Waterfront Environmental Committee’s Annual Student Scholarship
I had the pleasure of presenting a scholarship to Allan Dainty at the St. Clair Shores Waterfront Environmental Committee’s annual meeting. Not only is he a model student, but he has also contributed to the SCS community through his participation in the committee’s Nautical Mile Cleanup. Congrats, Allan — keep up the good work!
Celebrating Harper Woods High School’s First State Football Championship
Back in November, the Harper Woods Football Team won the MHSAA Division 4 State Championship — clinching the first state title in the school’s history! To recognize this momentous achievement, I joined State Rep. Veronica Piaz and the Harper Woods community for a celebratory parade on January 12th. Congratulations, Pioneers!
Welcoming Dirty Dough to District 12
It was a blast celebrating the grand opening of Dirty Dough in Chesterfield — the franchise’s first location in Michigan! We’re excited to have Karoline, Fadi and their team joining our vibrant small business community here in District 12.
Distributing Chromebooks to Students at North Lake High School
Our team had the pleasure of partnering with AT&T and the Macomb Area Chamber of Commerce to secure and distribute 99 Chromebooks at North Lake High School in St. Clair Shores. In today’s digital world, access to the internet is crucial, and these laptops will help our community bridge the digital divide.
Big thanks to Lori Doughty with AT&T, Kelley Lovati with the Macomb Chamber, Lake Shore Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Joseph DiPonio and Deputy Superintendent Dr. George Lewis for making this all possible!
Celebrating Sans Souci Bars’ Re-Opening on Harsens Island
Sans Souci Bar has been a stapple of Harsens Island since the establishment first opened in 1926. The bar has served as a community watering hole where both island residents and visitors have come for good food, good drinks and good conversations. While the business unfortunately closed a few years ago — three local families recently banded together to renovate the building and reestablish the bar back to its original glory. Thank you to Kathie, Bruce, Rhonda, Bob, Susanne and Tim for revitalizing this local gem — I can’t wait to come back and visit!
Joining State Rep. Denise Mentzer at a Senior Town Hall
Last month, I was grateful to join State Representative Denise Mentzer and Assistant Attorney General Scott Teter at a Senior Issues Town Hall in Mount Clemens to discuss some of the legislative wins we’ve secured for Michigan seniors — including the repeal of the retirement tax.
Preparing for the Cold: Be Winter Ready
During extremely cold weather or winter storms, staying safe can be a challenge. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends creating a communication plan with your family and taking steps to prepare your home and vehicle for the low temperatures.
- Weatherproof your home | Insulate walls and attic, caulk and weather-strip doors and windows, and insulate any water lines that run along exterior walls.
- Install a smoke detector and a carbon monoxide detector | Home heating is the second leading cause of home fires, make sure to prioritize fire safety and keep your house safe.
- Create an emergency car kit | Include items to stay warm, a portable phone charger, shovel, windshield scraper, flashlight, battery-powered radio, extra batteries, water, snacks, first-aid materials, jumper cables and waterproof matches.
- Prepare for power outages | Disconnect appliances and electronics to avoid damage from electrical surges, do not use a gas stove or oven to heat your home.
For more information on how to prepare for winter storms, please visit ready.gov/winter-ready.
Warming Centers in District 12
With the cold weather finally here, please make sure to stay warm. If you, a loved one or a neighbor need a place to escape the frigid temperatures, below is a list of warming center locations in or around District 12 that are heated and open to the public.
- Chesterfield Township Library | 50560 Patricia Avenue, (586) 598-4900
Monday-Thursday 9:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Friday 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
- Clinton-Macomb South Library | 40900 Romeo Plank Road, (586) 226-5070
Monday-Thursday 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Friday and Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Harrison Township Government Office | 38151 L’Anse Creuse, (586) 466-1400
Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
- Harrison Township Library | 38255 L’Anse Creuse Street, (586) 329-1261
Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Martha T. Berry Medical Care Facility | 43533 Elizabeth Road, (586) 469-5265
Monday- Sunday 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
If possible, call ahead to ensure the warming center has space and capacity. For additional locations, please dial 2-1-1 or find a complete map online here.
Tips to Keep More of Your Tax Return
Tax season is here, so it’s time to get out your tax documents and file with the state and federal government before the national deadline on Monday, April 15, 2024. Here are a few quick tips to help you maximize your return this year:
- Avoid scams | For federal returns, the IRS will only initiate contact with you through regular mail delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. Make sure you do not share your personal tax information via phone, email or social media.
- Utilize free resources | Michigan Free Tax Help connects Michiganders with free, high-quality income tax preparation assistance. Visit MichiganFreeTaxHelp.org to find local help.
- Take advantage of available deductions | You can deduct charitable contributions, property taxes, medical expenses and more from your federal 2023 taxes. Visit IRS.gov/credits-deductions for a full list.
Additionally, every year the Michigan Legislature publishes a state taxpayer guide with information to help residents prepare their taxes. If you would like to receive a digital copy of this resource, please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office.
Macomb County Green Schools Application Now Open
The Michigan Green Schools program is a fun, educational initiative that encourages students and faculty to participate in activities that are good for the environment and promote energy efficiency and savings. Now through March 3, Macomb County is accepting applications for the 2023-2024 Green Schools Program. Any K-12 public or private school in the county may apply using their online portal here.
It is one of my top goals as your State Senator to have myself and my office be as accessible to you as possible. To share your thoughts on legislation or seek assistance with an issue, please join me at one of our upcoming district events:
Small Business Town Hall
WHEN: Monday, January 29 from 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (doors open at 10:00 a.m.)
WHERE: Clay Township Municipal Building, 4710 Pointe Tremble, Clay Township, MI 48001
Join us in Clay Township for a Small Business Town Hall to learn about opportunities for small business owners and budding entrepreneurs in our area. Guest speakers include representatives from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, U.S. Small Business Administration and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses. Please RSVP for the event here.
Clean Energy Future Town Hall with State Rep. Denise Mentzer and the League of Conservation Voters
WHEN: Monday, February 12 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. (doors open at 5:45 p.m.)
WHERE: Mount Clemens Public Library, 150 Cass Ave, Mount Clemens, MI 48043
Please join State Senator Kevin Hertel, State Representative Denise Mentzer, the Michigan League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and other local and environmental experts for a panel discussion on Michigan’s Clean Energy Future package.
Coffee and Conversation
WHEN: Friday, February 16 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
WHERE: District Office, 28800 Harper, Saint Clair Shores, MI 48081
District Office Hours with Staff
WHEN: Every Thursday from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and by appointment
WHERE: District Office, 28800 Harper, Saint Clair Shores, MI 48081
If You Need Help: If you have a problem dealing with any department of state government, such as accessing unemployment benefits, my office is available to help resolve it. While we usually cannot assist with local or federal issues, we will always do our best to help direct you to the appropriate person or organization for help.
You may always feel free to call my office at (517) 373-7315 or email me at SenKHertel@senate.michigan.gov.
Keep Up to Date: Our bi-weekly newsletters are full of updates on what Team Hertel has been working on both in Lansing and District 12 to deliver results for Michiganders. To keep up to date with what we’ve been up to — sign up here to receive my bi-weekly newsletter, or access previous editions online here.