Sen. Brandenburg District Update

Brandenburg backs auto no-fault reform

The cost of auto insurance is a burden for many Michigan drivers. In fact, our state has the highest average annual premium in the nation. I recently supported legislation to help lower costs and better protect Michigan insurance customers.

Senate Bill 787 would allow Michigan residents age 65 or older to have the option to choose a capped auto insurance plan that would preserve their benefits. Seniors who choose this plan would have their catastrophic claims assessment significantly reduced. Medicare would cover remaining expenses after the $50,000 limit is reached.

Fraud also drives up costs. Senate Bill 1014 would create the Michigan Automobile Insurance Fraud Authority to investigate and reduce fraud, estimated at $400 million annually. Other reforms ensure 24/7 care remains available for individuals injured in auto accidents and does not limit care provided by skilled professionals. The bills have been sent to the House for consideration.

Brandenburg: Budget reflects priorities of Michigan families

The Legislature recently finished up work on the state budget, and for the eighth consecutive year, produced a balanced budget months ahead of schedule.

The plan features key investments to education, roads, jobs and public safety, including:

  • Providing $14.8 billion for K-12 education — the most in our state’s history;
  • Investing $58 million in school safety initiatives to keep our children safe;
  • Boosting road funding by $330 million, bringing our total added investment in roads and infrastructure to $2.4 billion since 2017;
  • Adding funds to train 155 state police troopers to keep our communities safe; and
  • Providing nearly $141 million in skilled trades training to prepare workers for in-demand jobs.

The budget also funds initiatives to safeguard our most vulnerable, support our veterans and protect our Great Lakes and natural resources. At the same time, we have continued our commitment to fiscal responsibility and increased the state’s rainy day fund to $1 billion.

Fishing the Great Lakes

Many Michigan anglers have favorite fishing spots on one of the state’s beautiful inland lakes or rivers, but would also love to fish the Great Lakes.

The Department of Natural Resources has developed four “roadmaps” that serve as starting points to provide new or experienced anglers with information on many Great Lakes fishing sites and times of the year when great opportunities exist. These roadmaps focus on fishing Southeast Michigan’s Great Lakes, Lake Huron, Lake Michigan and Lake Superior.  Each was developed with the expertise of the Fisheries Division staff. Visit www.michigan.gov/fishing and click on the link to Roadmaps to Fishing Michigan’s Great Lakes to discover new fishing opportunities this summer!

Overview of Michigan forest health

Michigan’s forest land covers nearly 20 million acres, including about 4 million acres of state forest managed by the Department of Natural Resources. The 2017 Forest Health Highlights report outlines current successes and challenges facing Michigan’s forest system, including efforts to stop invasive species such as the hemlock woolly adelgid and the battle against beech bark disease. Check out the work being done to preserve and protect the state’s forests at www.michigan.gov/foresthealth.