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Dear Neighbor, 

Spring is finally here and with it, all the sunshine and warmth that accompanies the new season.

The Senate has been keeping busy crafting a balanced budget, making progress on legislative priorities, and connecting with constituents. With this newsletter, I would like to provide an update on the many things we are working on. 

As always, if you or someone you know would like to provide any feedback about what’s happening in Lansing, or needs assistance of any sort, please feel free to reach out to my office. You can email us at or call (517) 373-8360. 

Warmest regards, 

Paul Wojno Signature

Paul Wojno
State Senator
District 10


Included in this newsletter:

  • Michigan Receives $50 Million in Federal Funding to Protect Communities Against Natural Hazards
  • Working to Keep Michigan Roads Safe: Michigan Senate Recognizes Distracted Driving Awareness Month
  • Michigan Senate Recognizes Workers’ Memorial Day
  • Working to Deliver a Fiscally Responsible State Budget
  • Michigan Senate Fights to Expand Access to Mental Health Care
  • Michigan Senate Introduces Momnibus Bills to Uplift Maternal Health in Michigan
  • Essential Resources for Mental Health Awareness Month
  • Michigan Education Trust Celebrates NFL Draft, Waives Enrollment Fee
  • Help Prevent the Spread of Invasive Plant Pests This Spring
  • Free Gun Locks Now Available at MDHHS Offices
  • Tips to Help You Safely Navigate Road Construction

Michigan Receives $50 Million in Federal Funding to Protect Communities Against Natural Hazards  

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, alongside the U.S Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT), announces that three Michigan projects have been selected to receive a combined $50 million in federal funding from the Department’s Promoting Resilient Operations for Transformative, Efficient, and Cost-saving Transportation (PROTECT) program.  

  • The Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG) has been awarded $900,000 for the “Southeast Michigan Regional Resilience Improvement Plan.” 
  • The City of Kalamazoo has been granted nearly $38 million for “Building Resilience in Kalamazoo’s Downtown Transportation Network.”  
  • The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will receive $12 million for “Pumping up 28th Street: Connecting Wyoming and Grand Rapids.”  

Altogether, this funding will help communities make surface transportation more resilient to natural hazards, like climate and flooding, ensuring sustainability for generations and safer roads for Michiganders. 


Working to Keep Michigan Roads Safe: Senate Democrats Recognize Distracted Driving Awareness Month 

Distracted driving accounts for about 25% of all crash fatalities, and in 2021, there were 6,543 motor vehicle crashes here in Michigan involving a distracted driver.  

To help rectify this issue and keep our roads safe for Michiganders driving to work, school or anywhere in between, I joined a bipartisan group of colleagues last year to update our distracted driving laws. Before, texting while driving was a ticketable offense, but things like scrolling social media or taking a video were not. Senate Bills 239241 made a much-needed update to our laws to ensure Michigan is truly a hands-free state and encourage people to focus on the most important task on the road: driving safely. These bills were signed into law and took effect on June 30, 2023.  

As we recognized April as National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, take a moment to learn more about these laws and how you can play your part in keeping our roads safe for yourself and your fellow Michiganders. Find more information, visit the Michigan State Police Office of Highway Safety website at


Michigan Senate Recognizes Workers’ Memorial Day

Workers Memorial Day

The Michigan Senate passed Senate Resolution 111, recognizing April 28, 2024, as Workers’ Memorial Day. On this day every year, communities and worksites around the world and across the state honor friends, family members, and colleagues who have been killed or injured on the job.  

Workers’ Memorial Day honors the integrity of Michigan’s workforce and honors the memory of the courageous and dedicated members of Michigan’s labor force who have been injured or disabled or have died as a result of workplace accidents. 

In 2022, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that in Michigan, 139 workers were lost through fatal workplace accidents and 5,486 workers were killed by traumatic injuries on the job across the nation — on average, a worker died every 96 minutes from a work-related injury. 

Senate Democrats remain dedicated in our effort to seek stronger workplace safety and health protections, better standards, and enforcement, and fair and just compensation — continuing to fight to improve both safety and health in every workplace. 


Working to Deliver a Fiscally Responsible State Budget 

Last year marked a significant milestone for Michigan Democrats as we capitalized on their first trifecta in 40 years to spearhead a transformative budget — directing vital resources into historically neglected sectors like infrastructure, education, and local communities. This comprehensive budget, encompassing various offices, departments, initiatives, projects, and programs, follows an annual funding cycle, necessitating the State Legislature to craft a new budget each year.  

Crafting this state budget is a collaborative effort involving negotiations between both legislative branches and the governor, resulting in a new state budget being signed into law each year to distribute funding to residents, schools, communities, businesses, local governments, and more. 

Currently, we’re in the thick of our annual budget process with subcommittees reporting out proposals for the full Appropriations Committee’s consideration. As we work to deliver a budget by the end of June, I encourage you to learn more about the process and the investments we’re looking to make to support communities across Michigan — read more here


Michigan Senate Fights to Expand Access to Mental Health Care 

Throughout our state, communities are grappling with the issue of having too little access to mental health support — a crisis particularly affecting young Michiganders and our veterans. That’s why Senate Democrats took action and made critical investments in the 2024 State Budget to address this gap in coverage and ensure all Michigan residents who need assistance can access it. A few highlights of the investments we have made thus far in mental health care include: 

  • $280 million for certified community behavioral health clinics to expand access to care. 
  • $328 million in the education budget to address the mental health and safety concerns of students and teachers. 
  • $1.2 million for suicide prevention programs to help military veterans and their families. 

As we recognize May as Mental Health Awareness Month and as we continue to craft our budget for 2025, my colleagues and I remain committed to ensuring every person in our state can access essential services and programs to improve their mental health and overall well-being. Together, we can break down barriers to care and create a healthier, more resilient Michigan. 


Michigan Senate Introduces Momnibus Bills to Uplift Maternal Health in Michigan 

MI Momnibus Graphic

The Michigan Senate has introduced the “Momnibus” — a legislative package (Senate Bills 818827) aimed to bolster equity and accountability in maternal healthcare services statewide. With a multi-faceted approach, these bills aim to strengthen community-driven programs, enhance prenatal care and maternal healthcare, and amplify the voices of Black birthing individuals, mothers, women, families, and stakeholders. 

It is critical for our state to pass such legislation as we see Black mothers in the United States face disproportionately higher risks during pregnancy and childbirth. According to the Centers for Disease Control, Black women’s mortality rate from pregnancy-related causes is three times higher than that of white women, with structural racism underlying these disparities. 

Black women face unfair healthcare challenges compared to white women, leading to higher risks and even life-threatening complications. As mortality rates climb and reproductive freedoms come under fire, it’s crucial to back local initiatives that enhance prenatal and maternal care, support breastfeeding and nutrition and safeguard abortion access. The “Momnibus” will now advance to the Senate Housing and Human Services Committee for further consideration. 


Essential Resources for Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental Health Awareness Month graphic

With one in five Americans and nearly 1.5 million Michiganders experiencing mental health issues each year, it’s important to remind ourselves to care for our mental and emotional health. If you find yourself emotionally struggling or experiencing a mental health crisis, please be sure to utilize the following resources and remember — you matter! 

Crisis Lines 

  • 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline: 988 is a 24/7 toll-free nationwide hotline that provides confidential and compassionate care for anyone struggling with behavioral health issues, emotional distress, or substance use crisis. If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or visit their Lifeline Chat to connect with a trained crisis counselor. 
  • Veterans Crisis Line: The Veterans Crisis line provides veterans and their family members with 24/7, confidential support. To connect, call 1-800-273-8255 and press 1 or text 838-255. You do not have to be enrolled in VA benefits or health care to call. 
  • Trevor Lifeline: The Trevor Project has trained counselors who understand the challenges young people in the LGBTQ community face and are available for support 24/7. Call 1-866-488-7386, text 678-678, or click here to speak with a crisis counselor. 

Locating Treatment Services 

  • Michigan 211: If you need assistance locating long-term mental health resources, talking through a problem, or exploring mental health treatment options, call 211 or visit to speak with a live person who can help. All conversations are confidential, can be made anonymously, and are available in 180 languages upon request. 
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration: Visit, a confidential and anonymous resource, to locate treatment facilities for mental and substance use disorders near you.  
  • Michigan Community Mental Health Services Programs: CMHSPs provide a comprehensive range of services and supports to children, adolescents, and adults with mental illnesses, developmental disabilities, and substance use disorders in all 83 Michigan counties. Find your local program here

Michigan Education Trust Celebrates NFL Draft, Waives Enrollment Fee 

The Michigan Education Trust (MET) helps make saving for college easier. MET is a prepaid tuition savings program that lets families pay today’s prices for future higher education costs. It’s flexible, transferable, and even refundable. 

To celebrate the 2024 NFL draft being held in Detroit this past week, MET is waiving their $25 online enrollment fee for anyone opening an account between now and June 30, 2024 — you just have to use the code 2024DRAFT when you enroll. 

MET funds may be used to pay for future tuition and mandatory fees at a community college, college, university, or trade school in accordance with the program’s terms and conditions. You can open a MET contract by purchasing as little as one credit hour, and anyone can contribute to a child’s education savings plan, including grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, and others. With a Pay-As-You-Go plan, once the plan is opened, contributions can be as low as $25. 

Learn more at

Help Prevent the Spread of Invasive Plant Pests This Spring 

It’s finally spring in Michigan and that means Michiganders are thinking about what they want to plant in their garden this year. As gardening season gets underway, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is asking people to learn about the risks posed by invasive plant pests, diseases, and harmful weeds and what you can do to help prevent the introduction and spread of invasive species. 

Here are a few simple ways you can help limit the spread of invasive species: 

  • Learn to spot invasive pests posing a threat to agriculture and the environment in your area. Report signs of invasive plant pests and diseases at
  • Purchase heat-treated firewood or buy wood where you burn it to avoid unintentionally spreading species that hide in untreated firewood. 
  • When traveling, be aware of pests residing in your destination to avoid returning with them in tow. For international travel, declare food, plants and other agricultural items to U.S. Customs and Border Protection to ensure these items are pest-free. 
You can also check out MDARD’s Buggin’ Out video series for information about invasive species, beneficial insects, pest management, and more. 

Free Gun Locks Now Available at MDHHS Offices 

Gun violence is the leading cause of death for Michigan children and teens, and in recent years, unintentional shootings by children have been rising. To promote responsible gun ownership and help keep families safe from the devastating effects of gun violence, my colleagues and I took bold action last year to deliver a slate of gun violence prevention legislation that Michigan residents have waited years for.  

Among the legislation passed, Public Act 17 of 2023 requires firearms to be locked and unloaded when unattended, particularly if minors are likely to be present. Failure to comply results in penalties, including misdemeanors and felonies, if minors gain access to improperly stored firearms. 

To help minimize the cost of purchasing firearm safety devices, the Michigan State Police (MSP) and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are partnering together to offer free gun locks to the public at MDHHS county offices and some local health departments. 

To request a free gun lock while supplies last, you can visit your local MDHHS office or check with your local health department, some of which will have gun locks available. Free firearm safety devices can also be obtained through Project ChildSafe police partners across the state. These cable-style gun locks are made possible due to funding secured in the 2024 State Police Budget passed by the Legislature last year. 

For more information, click here.  


Tips to Help You Safely Navigate Road Construction 

With road construction ramping up, it is important to be mindful of our workers and their safety in these construction zones.  Between state, county, and local projects, there will be several work zones throughout our community this year. During this time, make sure to remain alert and practice caution to keep yourself and road workers free from harm. To help keep the roads as safe as possible, make sure to practice these driving tips: 

  • Plan ahead: Expect delays, plan for them, and leave early to reach your destination on time. When you can, avoid work zones altogether by using alternate routes.  
  • Obey road crews and signs: When approaching a work zone, watch for cones, barrels, signs, large vehicles, or workers in bright-colored vests to warn you and direct you where to go.  
  • Slow down: Look for signs indicating the speed limit through the work zone. Keep a safe distance from the vehicle ahead of you and follow the posted speed limit.  
  • Move over: Most state move-over laws apply when passing work crews and official vehicles parked on the shoulder with flashing warning lights.  
  • Avoid distractions: Keep your eyes on the road and off your phone at all times.  
  • Watch for sudden stoppages: Don’t make sudden lane changes in front of trucks that are trying to slow down.