Sen. Brandenburg District Update

Brandenburg: Senate passes 2019 state budget plan

The Senate recently approved a balanced budget plan that invests in Michigan’s future. Our budget recommendations prioritize education funding and public safety and continue our commitment to fix Michigan roads, while making government more efficient with taxpayer dollars. Some of the highlights include:

  • $14.7 billion for K-12 education, the most in state history;
  • Nearly $14 million to train 180 state police troopers;
  • $10 million for a new grant program to provide mental health services to K-12 students; and
  • Almost $41 million in Going Pro skilled trades training to prepare workers for in-demand jobs.

In addition, the transportation funding in this budget, along with the recent road funding package, invests $2.1 billion more in our roads since 2017.

The Michigan Senate, House and governor’s office will iron out differences in their budget plans and produce a final state budget in the coming weeks. I will keep you posted on the progress.

Brandenburg supports bill to help prevent drunk driving

As we know, drinking and driving can have devastating results. Almost 29 people in the United States die every day in alcohol-impaired vehicle crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The lives of countless other people are impacted as well.

Some parents would like to utilize technology to help prevent their young drivers from making the poor choice to drive while under the influence of alcohol. I recently supported legislation to allow for the voluntary installation of startup operated breath engine restrictor (SOBER) devices without the device sending reports to the secretary of state when used.

Currently, even when interlock devices are installed voluntarily, the installation company is required to generate a report. Senate Bill 892 would allow SOBER devices to be installed without any involvement with the government.

The bill has been referred to the House Committee on Judiciary.

Memorial Day: a time to honor our fallen

Each year a special Senate Memorial Day service pays tribute to our fallen servicemen and women. This solemn tradition ensures the legacy of their sacrifice and service is never taken for granted or forgotten. The occasion also recognizes the families of the fallen.

The Senate’s May 24, 2018 ceremony marks the 24th anniversary of this event.

Staying safe during severe weather

Spring weather can bring thunderstorms, lightning and high winds, leading to possible power shortages. The Michigan State Police offers suggestions to stay safe during a power outage, including:

  • Use only flashlights or emergency lighting; never use candles;
  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed to keep food as fresh as possible;
  • Disconnect appliances and electronics;
  • Use extreme caution when driving; and
  • Avoid carbon monoxide by not using grills, unvented gas heaters, generators or ovens in the house.

To learn more about being prepared before, during and after severe weather, visit www.michigan.gov/miready.