Legislative Report


Remembering 9/11

We all started September 11th by thinking about that day and what we were doing. I was a brand-new principal of a K-12 school in the UP. I remember having a horrible headache when I got up. Around 9 am one of the staff told me to look at the TV and the awful events started to unfold. I remember having all the teachers let the students watch. I had the teachers of kindergarten and the lower elementary classes limit it, but we felt this was important for our kids to see. I did give everyone freedom to read it their class, and turn away when they felt it was best.

Later in the day I had to make the decision about having our girls’ basketball team play their varsity and JV games at a neighboring school. I talked to the principal, and said I was not ready to let these terrorists alter our way of life and we wanted to play. Our game was the only one played in our area that night. For me, it was an act of defiance and faith in American resilience.

My life has changed a lot since then. My dad, who was 96 and lived with us, died at the end of October. He was buried in New Jersey and when we flew into Newark the Twin Towers were gone. Driving on the New Jersey Turnpike, you could always see them, but now there was only the Empire State Building. My college age son and daughter were frisked in Newark, and saw automatic rifles being toted around the airport. It made an impression.

My husband died of cancer eight months later. I moved to Colorado three years later. I was a principal in two different school systems there for six years. When I retired, I went with the Peace Corps to South Africa, and wound up in the Traverse City area after I returned home.

I am now an activist. I am collecting signatures for VotersNotPoliticians, and work with the GT Democratic Party, Indivisible and League of Women Voters. I try to keep up with the bills in the Federal and State Legislators and share them with you.

Federal

Rep. Bergman and Senators Stabenow and Peters voted for the READ Act HR 601 which provides 15 billion in hurricane relief and pushes the debt limit discussion off for 3 months until December. It also keeps the government operating until then.

Rep. Bergman voted for HR 2864, the Improved Access to Capital bill. I am not able to find out what this means. It now goes to the Senate to be acted upon.

The Defense Authorization bill HR 2810 and the Omnibus Appropriations HR 3354 will be considered soon.

HR 3697 or Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act will make it easier to deport criminal gang members is also on the docket. HOWEVER, this bill contains language that will also affect asylum seeker, temporary protected status and unaccompanied children. It sounds good but has unacceptable provisions that criminalize all undocumented immigrants. This information is from Megavote which tracks all legislative actions in the congress.

Michigan

Michigan Votes is a service that tracks what bills are being considered or voted on.

HR 4892 is a bill to Revise City Candidate Filing Deadline Details. Currently, there is a state deadline, but local officials gave local candidates the wrong information. This bill allows them to run, and improves training for election officials in the future.

Michigan Resistance recommends that we call our federal representatives about the “Dream Act” S 1615/HR 3440, and about insurance coverage for victims of catastrophic auto accidents.

The following is copied from their release today:

Urge House Republicans to support the Dream Act because Trump is going to deport undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children. Trump has decided to rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, despite bi-partisan support for the policy. DACA has allowed over 800,000 immigrant youth to continue living in the United States without fear of deportation. In doing so, he is breaking apart families and effectively imperiling the lives of hardworking individuals who have made America their home. Immigrants are vital contributors to the nation’s economy as consumers and service providers, and have been part and partial to the country’s productivity and capacity for innovation. In anticipation of the dismantling of DACA,

Republicans and Democrats have come together to push forward legislation that will protect immigrants. The 2017 Dream Act is a bi-partisan effort to provide a pathway to citizenship for immigrants. It would provide young people who were brought to the U.S. as children, the chance to apply lawful permanent resident status if they attend college or perform military service.

Please call these Republican U.S. Congressmen from Michigan:

David Trott: 202-225-8171 Fred Upton: 202-225-3761 Jack Bergman: 202-225-4735 Tim Walberg: 202-225-6276 Bill Huizenga: 202-225-4401 Mike Bishop: 202-225-4872 Justin Amash: 202-225-3831 Paul Mitchell: 202-225-2106 John Moolenaar: 202-225-3561

Hi, my name is _____ and I strongly oppose President Trump rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. I urge Representative _____ to do everything in his/her power to protect immigrant youth and families from detention or deportation, and to provide a pathway to citizenship for immigrants by supporting HR3440, the 2017 Dream Act. Thank you.

Urge State House Representatives to not deny funds to victims of horrible auto accidents. For people who survive catastrophic auto accidents, their medical bills can be literally millions of dollars. Currently, Michigan has a no-fault auto insurance policy, which covers these costs so victims can pay for home health care assistance. But insurance companies have been attempting to gut the no-fault auto insurance policy so they can pay less to people whose lives have been ruined by these terrible auto accidents. The Republicans are about to introduce a bill immediately that is going to try to eliminate no-fault insurance, so we want to tell them not to support this policy so they don't even introduce the bill.

Please call these Michigan State Representatives in the Insurance Committee:

Lana Theis 517-373-1784 Beau LaFave 517-373-0156 Curt VanderWall 517-373-1784 Jason Wentworth 517-373-8962 Tom Barrett 517-373-0853 Phil Phelps 517-373-7515 Gary Glenn 517-373-1791 Sherry Gay-Dagnogo 517-373-3815 Jim Runestad 517-373-1791 Michele Hoitenga 517-373-1747 Hank Vaupel 517-373-8835 Michael Webber 517-373-1773 Joesph Bellino 517-373-1530 Tim Greimel 517-373-0475 Robert Wittenberg 517-373-0478

Hi, I’m calling to urge Representative ______ to oppose policies that attempt to restructure no-fault insurance and limit personal injury protection for those in car accidents. Please oppose policies that cap benefits, limit allowable expenses, or increase policy holder premiums.

Accidents can happen to anyone; No fault insurance provides a necessary safety net that provides some financial reprieve in worse case scenarios. Don’t let insurance companies take this away from the insured. Please tell Representative ____ to support policies that strengthen no-fault insurance and protects policy holders.

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