Senator Brandenburg District Update

Sen. Jack Brandenburg

Sen. Jack Brandenburg

Sen. Brandenburg backs new laws to reduce red tape for schools

School resources should be focused on the classroom and helping our children learn and succeed.

A package of Senate bills now signed into law will reduce red tape so educators can focus on student achievement. The new laws end unnecessary and burdensome state reporting requirements that are often redundant or may even be obsolete by the submission date!

Removing these requirements means there’s less time spent on wasteful paperwork. And that means more time can be focused on duties directly affecting students and their academic performance.

Sen. Brandenburg supports new law to modernize veterans homes

Our veterans have made many sacrifices in service to our country. We must make sure they receive the highest standards of care they so fully deserve.

I supported Senate legislation — now law — to establish the Michigan Veterans’ Facility Authority.  Under the new law, the Authority has the ability to bond for the construction of new state-of-the-art veteran facilities. The first phase would site facilities in Grand Rapids and Detroit. Subsequent phases would locate future homes in different areas of the state. In addition, the Legislature appropriated separate funding in the FY 17 budget for improvements to the veterans home in Marquette.

Under Public Acts 560-563 of 2016, our veterans will have better access to quality long-term care services.

Business services expanded on Treasury website

The Michigan Treasury Online website has been updated to improve its internet services to business taxpayers.

Among other transactions, businesses can upload their W-2s and other wage statements, request fuel credit refunds and perform other paperless taxpayer duties online. Visit www.michigan.gov/mtobusiness for more information.

Winter free fishing weekend approaching

Whatever the weather, fishing offers a great way to spend time in Outdoor Michigan!

Michigan’s annual Winter Free Fishing Weekend — held February 18 and 19 this year — provides an opportunity to enjoy a special season of fishing, either on the ice or along open water. All fishing license fees are waived for the two days. All fishing regulations still apply. Parking is also free at state parks and state boating access sites during the free fishing weekend!

Find more information, including sponsored events, at www.michigan.gov/freefishing. Access the 2016-2017 Michigan Fishing Guide at www.michigan.gov/fishing.

Brandenburg out of action for four to five weeks

Sen. Jack Brandenburg

Sen. Jack Brandenburg

Lansing, MI — State Sen. Jack Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township, announced on Wednesday that he will be out of action for the next four to five weeks.

Brandenburg will undergo surgery on Jan. 16 at St. Johns Hospital to repair injuries to his right hip and lower right back.

“It has been two years of dealing with severe pain, and my situation has not improved, only having grown worse,” Brandenburg said. “I am tired of the pills, the shots, and the pain. My doctor fully agrees that surgery is needed and I am confident that I will be good as new in four to five weeks.”

Brandenburg had his right hip replaced 12 years ago. Two years ago he had a very serious fall in the Senate parking lot that jarred loose parts of the hip.

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Senator Brandenburg District Update

Sen. Brandenburg backs effort to ensure students learn CPR

High school is a time to help prepare our students for the “real world.” Now, under Senate legislation recently signed into law, graduates will enter the workforce or attend college having learned an important lifesaving skill.

I supported Senate Bill 647 (Public Act 388 of 2016), which adds instruction in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) as part of the state health education standards for grades 7-12. Schools are encouraged to use local law enforcement or emergency response personnel, or representatives of the Red Cross or the American Heart Association to provide the training.

The use of CPR and AEDs increases the likelihood a person will survive a cardiac arrest. If every high school student had this training before graduation, Michigan would gain 100,000 new CPR-trained individuals each year! The new law will take effect at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year.

Sen. Brandenburg supports new laws to update standards for skilled trades

Skilled trade jobs are a vital part of Michigan’s economy. I supported a 10-bill package to modernize guidelines for the skilled trade professions and help encourage workers to choose a career in the trades.

The Senate legislation — now law — creates one uniform code for five trade groups, including electricians, mechanical contractors, boiler inspectors and installers, building inspectors and plumbers.  The reform establishes clear and efficient standards for the application and complaint processes and how penalties are enforced. The new law also streamlines requirements for those workers who are licensed across multiple trades.

Spring turkey hunting application period ends Feb. 1

There may be snow on the ground but it’s never too early for hunters to think spring! The spring season is the traditional time to hunt turkey.

The 2017 spring turkey season runs April 17 through May 31, with several different hunt periods to choose from. The application period is open through Feb. 1 and a $5 application may be purchased where hunting licenses are sold or online at www.mdnr-elicense.com. Drawing results are available beginning March 6 at www.michigan.gov/turkey. Access the 2017 Michigan Spring Turkey Digest at this site for more information, including details on regulations, season dates and hunt units.

State of the Great Lakes report released

The Great Lakes are Michigan’s most treasured natural resource. These magnificent lakes are central to our economy and outdoor heritage.

The recently released 2016 Michigan State of the Great Lakes Report takes a look at a number of important “big lake” issues, including Michigan’s water strategy, water trails recreation, water technology innovation and the blue economy. Access the document at www.michigan.gov/documents/deq/SOGL_2016_546173_7.pdf.