Capitol and Community Updates

Friday, July 6, 2018

Hello Friends,

 

I hope you’re all staying cool as we head further into summer. If anyone you know is struggling with the heat, please know that many public buildings offer a place to cool off from the heat during normal business hours. You can locate Washtenaw County cooling centers here.

 

This will be the last e-news you get from me for some time. Due to the policies of the House of Representatives, I am not allowed to send any more electronic mailings like this until after the voting primary on Wednesday, Aug. 8. Not to worry — I haven’t forgotten about you! I’ve made sure that this newsletter is jam-packed with news from the Capitol, in-district events, and resources for you to utilize.

You can also follow my Facebook page for more legislative updates and information on resources and events around the district. Want faster and more frequent updates? Follow me on Twitter or Instagram @DonnaLasinski.

 

As always, you can still contact me at (517) 373-0828, by email at DonnaLasinski@house.mi.gov, or by visiting my website at RepLasinski.com, with any questions, thoughts, or suggestions. I look forward to hearing from you, or seeing you all out and about in the wonderful House District 52.

 

Legislative Update

 

Sparking the Growth of Small Business

 

As the owner of a small business myself, I recognize the large benefit of small businesses within the Michigan economy as well as the difficulty that can accompany the decision to start your own business. In 2014 alone, small businesses created over 34,000 jobs in Michigan. In collaboration with Reps. Gay-Dagnogo, Chirkun, Dianda, and Wittenberg, I aimed to create a package of bills that would ensure small business owners in our state have the resources and knowledge they need to succeed. The Neighborhood Businesses, Neighborhood Growth package is intended to support entrepreneurship, innovation, and provide resources to small businesses in Michigan. This will also ensure that we invest properly in the small businesses that are the backbone of our economy and state.

 

I am the sponsor of House Bill 6238 to create a small business and entrepreneurship services office. Other bills in this package would increase state government support and focus on small businesses, create small business preference in state procurement, and allocate funding for small business owners to buy into a secure retirement savings plan at the state level. This package of legislation will provide the resources our innovators need to create their own business, and will ensure that we support those who already spark growth in our communities.

 

Michigan HirED Opportunity Act

 

Michigan is ranked 13th-highest in the nation for student loan debt. No one should have to choose between going into debt and getting an education. The House Democrats’ HirED Opportunity Act would tackle that problem head-on by creating the first statewide, debt-free community college system in Michigan.

 

The HirED Opportunity Act helps graduating high school seniors to achieve a college degree despite the skyrocketing higher education costs. It will also allow adults seeking to return to school to earn a new credential, receive skills training or fulfill a degree program to be eligible for debt-free tuition through a new career program focused on high-demand and/or emerging industries. Part one of the HirED Opportunity Act is to allow recent high school graduates to enroll full-time in a community college program and receive a Community College Opportunity Scholarship for debt-free tuition, regardless of income or ZIP code. Part two includes provisions to help strengthen worker training for those seeking to go back to school to sharpen their skills or make a career transition since non-traditional students make up a growing percentage of those seeking to further their education.

 

I believe that this program is achievable right now by properly prioritizing our state budget and federal workforce dollars. Education is the foundation on which our society is built but, under the current system, people are being priced out of the education they need for a job that allows them to take care of their families, plan for the future, and save for retirement.

 

Upcoming Time with Donna

 

I’m here to listen to you!

 

Freedom Township Coffee Hour

 

Join me for a Freedom Township Coffee Hour where we will have the opportunity to discuss legislative updates and what’s happening in Lansing and in Washtenaw County.

 

When: Saturday, July 14, from 10-11 a.m.

Where: Freedom Township Hall, 11508 E. Pleasant Lake Road in Manchester

 

Drafts with Donna

 

Join me for Drafts with Donna where I’ll have time to answer your questions and discuss policy coming up in Lansing.

 

When: Thursday, July 26, from 6:30-9 p.m.

Where: Zou Zou’s Café Chelsea, 101 N. Main St. in Chelsea

 

Scio Township Coffee Hour

 

Join me for a Scio Township Coffee Hour where we will have the opportunity to discuss legislative updates and what’s happening in Lansing and in Washtenaw County.

 

When: Saturday, August 11, from 10-11 a.m.

Where: Joe and Rosie’s Creamery (Formerly Coffee House Creamery), 3780 Jackson Road, Unit C in Ann Arbor

 

What To Do In HD 52 this Summer

 

Since you won’t be hearing from me in your email for a bit, I put together a lengthy list of events you might want to mark on your calendar.

 

Chelsea

 

Sounds and Sights Festival

 

This weekend event will feature national and regional live music acts, local food and brew, classic car show, chalk artists and multiple activities for all ages.

 

When: Thursday, July 26 through Saturday, July 28

Where: Downtown Chelsea, 310 N. Main St. in Chelsea

 

6th Annual Sounds and Sights Festival Chalk Art Contest

 

Participants of all abilities and ages are encouraged to help transform the streets of Chelsea into vibrant colors and works of art.

 

When: Saturday, July 28

Where: Downtown Chelsea, 310 N. Main St. in Chelsea

 

Yoga on the Lawn

 

A free Yoga on the Lawn class will be offered through a joint effort of the 5 Healthy Towns Foundations, Chelsea Wellness Center, and the Chelsea District Library.

 

When: Every Saturday morning from June 16 to Aug. 18, pending good weather

Where: Chelsea District Library, 221 S. Main St. in Chelsea

 

Movie Mondays

 

Enjoy a movie in air-conditioned comfort with free popcorn! Bring your own pillow or blanket to get cozy.

 

When: Every other Monday beginning June 18

Where: Chelsea District Library, 221 S. Main St. in Chelsea

 

Dexter

 

46th Annual Dexter Daze

 

Festivities in Monument Park including arts and crafts booths, social tent, bounce zone and more.

 

When: Friday, Aug. 10, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday, Aug. 11, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Where: Mill Creek Park

 

Drummunity!

 

Dexter resident, Lori Fithian, has facilitated a drum circle workshop for many years. Her program has been a favorite at the Library. You won’t believe your ears when you hear the group playing together – on everything from hand drums, pickle buckets, salad bowls to muffin tins.  Musical experience is not necessary. This is a high energy, interactive, fun and empowering event for all ages.

 

When: Friday, July 6, from 11 a.m. to noon

Where: Dexter District Library, 3255 Alpine St. in Dexter

 

A2 Magic with Jeff Wawrzaszek

 

Jeff Wawrzaszek displays a magic routine for people of all ages.

 

When: Friday, July 13, from 11 a.m. to noon

Where: Dexter District Library, 3255 Alpine St. in Dexter

 

PaleoJoe

 

Dressing the part of a “Digger” he introduces animals, plants and creatures that have been extinct for millions of years. His high-energy program brings life to these creatures of long ago.

 

When: Friday, July 20, from 11 a.m. to noon

Where: Dexter District Library, 3255 Alpine St. in Dexter

 

Secretary of State Mobile Office

 

Customers may renew their driver’s license or register to vote, quickly and easily, right on the spot.  Other services offered by the Mobile Office include instant titles, address changes, signing up on the Michigan Organ Donor Registry and much more.

 

When: Friday, July 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: Dexter District Library, 3255 Alpine St. in Dexter

 

Manchester

 

65th Manchester Chicken Broil

 

This long-time civic event is considered the largest event of its kind, serving approximately 10,000 meals in a four-hour period. Net proceeds from this event are used to benefit a variety of causes in the Manchester area, including the public schools, community parks, library and local civic organizations. Funds from recent years have been applied to downtown Christmas season decorations, and for major renovations to the Kirk Park ball diamonds, infrastructure and children’s playground equipment associated with our youth baseball and softball leagues.

 

When: Thursday, July 19, from 4-8 p.m.

Where: Alumni Memorial Field, 220 S Vernon St. in Manchester

 

Northfield Township Area Library Community Picnics

 

Kick back and enjoy the summer evening with your neighbors on the lawn with music, games, and laughter. Whitmore Lake Public Schools will be hosting a storytime for elementary aged kids, and they will be giving away books for the kiddos to add to their home library. Bring your own meal, but the Library will be providing water and lemonade.

 

When: Friday, July 20 and August 17, from 6-7:30 p.m.

Where: Northfield Township Area Library, 125 Barker Road in Whitmore Lake

 

Saline

 

Saline Summerfest

 

On one fine summer weekend, on the streets of Downtown Saline, a wonderful assortment of activities, attractions and amusements will bring together people of all ages and interests.

 

When: Aug. 10-11 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Downtown Saline

 

Saline County Fair

 

The Saline Community Fair includes all the old time classics of any fair, a cement slab tractor pull, the USA demolition derby and a tractor pull.

 

When: Wednesday, Aug. 29-Monday, Sept. 3

Where: Washtenaw Farm Council Grounds, 5055 Ann Arbor Saline Road in Ann Arbor

 

Saline Celtic Festival

 

The Saline Celtic Festival is a fun and exciting event for all ages and includes a rich blend of Celtic music, dance and athletics.

 

When: Friday, July 13 at 5 p.m. through Saturday, July 14 at 10 p.m.

Where: Mill Pond Park, 565 W. Bennett St. in Saline

 

Mazza Summer Art Show

 

2nd annual Mazza art show featuring original artwork from children’s book illustrations. This exhibit has been arranged through the generosity of the individual artists contributing to Mazza Museum's collection, curated by Dan Chudzinski and the Mazza Museum

 

When: Every Saturday this summer from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Saline District Library, 555 N. Maple Road in Saline

 

Scio Township

 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection

 

The Home Toxins Reduction Program is holding several collection events for Washtenaw County residents to safely dispose of flammable, poisonous, toxic and corrosive materials. If Saturdays do not work with your schedule, feel free to call 734-222-3810 to schedule a weekday drop-off appointment.

 

When: First three Saturdays of the month through November, 9 a.m. to noon

Where: 705 N. Zeeb Road in Ann Arbor

 

Lodi Township

 

2018 Washtenaw County 4-H Youth Show

 

The annual Washtenaw County 4-H Youth Show is considered to be the capstone event of the 4-H year where members have the opportunity to showcase projects that they have been working hard on all year long! These projects range from raising market livestock to sell at the auction to riding horses or making jewelry and much more. For more information, visit www.washtenawfarmcouncil.org.

 

When: Sunday, July 22 through Friday, July 27

Where: Washtenaw Farm Council Grounds, 5055 Ann Arbor Saline Road in Ann Arbor

 

Northfield Township

 

Northfield Township Area Library Community Picnics

 

Whitmore Lake Public Schools will be hosting storytime for elementary aged children and even giving away books to add to their home library. Join your neighbors on the lawn with music, games and laughter. The Library is providing lemonade and water, but this is a bring-your-own-meal event.

 

When: Friday, July 20 and Friday, Aug. 17, from 6-7:30 p.m.

Where: Northfield Township Area Library, 125 Barker Road in Whitmore Lake

 

Movies under the Stars

 

Bring friends and family to enjoy a pleasant family movie under the stars. Either watch from the shore or your boat on the lake, but all movies begin at dusk. Free event with concessions available for purchase.

 

When:  Friday, July 27        Star Wars: The Force Awakens

             Friday, Aug. 10        Ferdinand

             Friday, Aug. 24        Coco

Where: Across the street from the Post Office and Community Park

 

Perseid Meteor Shower Viewing and Night Sky Mini-Lecture

 

Listen to a short talk by Naturalist Ron Gamble about meteor showing viewing and then watch the beautiful Perseid Meteor Shower in the night sky. Registration is required to attend. To register, visit parksonline.ewashtenaw.org.

 

When: Saturday, Aug. 11, from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Where: Independence Lake County Park, 3200 Jennings Road in Whitmore Lake

 

Summer Woods Walk

 

Enjoy a hike in the Whitmore Lake Preserve to explore the diversity of life found in an oak hickory forest, identify various plants, and search for signs of animal life.  Sturdy, comfortable shoes are recommended as the hike is well over a mile.

 

When: Sunday, Aug. 26, from 2-4 p.m.

Where: Whitmore Lake Preserve, 1551 7 Mile Road in Whitmore Lake

 

Resources

 

Staying Active (and Cool) in the Summer Heat

 

As we approach the height of summer heat come July and August, it does not mean that summer activities should have to be cut short. Staying active is important but so is finding ways to stay cool. First, earlier often means cooler and avoiding doing intense activities in the middle of the day is a good way to remain active while minimizing the dangers of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Second, drink plenty of water to replenish any you lost through sweat. Third, wear light-colored clothing and wicking fabrics to avoid soaking up the sun’s rays and transfer sweat away from your body. Stay active and stay healthy, Washtenaw County!

Hot Weather Tips

 

  • Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty. Avoid drinks with caffeine.
  • Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles.
  • Check on family, friends, and neighbors who do not have air conditioning and who spend much of their time alone.
  • Check on your animals frequently to ensure that they are not suffering from the heat.
  • Go to a designated cooling sites if your home loses power during periods of extreme heat. Stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine if air conditioning is not available.

 

Cooling Sites

 

If you need a place to cool off from the heat during business hours, many public libraries and public buildings, including the County Human Services Building at 555 Towner St. in Ypsilanti offer it. Find a list of 2018 cooling sites across the county here.  

 

Prevent Heat-Related Illness

 

Heat illness can occur when the body is unable to cool down. The body normally cools down by sweating. During extremely hot weather, sweating may not be enough to cool the body. The risk of heat-related illness increases when temperatures remain high for multiple days. If you suspect you or a loved one are experiencing heat stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately.

 

Does Your Furry Friend Need Vaccines?

 

As the proud new owner of an adorable puppy, I want to make sure that everyone’s animals have access to the vaccinations they might need. There is a Lost Cost Vaccine Wellness Clinic that will be traveling around Washtenaw County to make sure that your furry friends are up to date on their vaccines. More information about the Lost Cost Vaccine Wellness Clinic can be found in the Sun Times or by calling them directly at (313) 686-5701.

 

Looking for Summer Recreation and Activities To Do?

 

The Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Department has compiled a list of options available to your family and/or your kids. The recreation and activities they have listed range from badminton to nature trails to hike, walk, jog, and enjoy the beauty of nature. The complete list can be found here: https://www.washtenaw.org/715/Recreation-Activities. I strongly encourage you to take advantage of all that our county has to offer!

 

How Much Sun is Too Much?

 

With warmer weather, we all have forgotten at least once to put on and reapply sunscreen. The scorching sunburns and peeling skin are no fun, but there are other signs that you may have spent too much time in the sun to watch out for. Those include muscle cramps, headaches, blisters or bumps, nausea, dizziness, dehydration, and a lack of sweat. Know the signs so you can make the most of your summer vacations!

 

Local Resources for Youth

 

The Ozone House is an agency in Washtenaw County that provides free, confidential and voluntary shelter and support services to run away, homeless, and high-risk youth ages 10-20 and their families. They offer a wide variety of services including family counseling, affordable health and dental care, housing, runaway and legal services, financial and employment assistance, mental health services, and much more.  For more information, text/call (734) 662-2222.

 

Need Fingerprinting?

 

Does your new job require fingerprinting? Need them for a 24-hour liquor license? No worries, Washtenaw County offers fingerprinting on a first-come, first-serve basis Monday through Friday (except holidays) from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Fees vary, but a valid photo identification must be provided. For more information, visit their website at www.washtenaw.org/1534/Fingerprinting-Information or call the front desk at (734) 973-4691.

 

Are You a New Mom?

 

Within Washtenaw County, there are multiple resources available to new moms and babies. Resources include finding regular medical care for mother and child, assistance with breastfeeding, parenting help, affordable childcare, baby items, or legal resources. All the contact information is broken down by specific needs and/or resource here: http://umhs-rahs.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Young-Mom-Resources-_-Oct-2016.pdf.

 

The view from my office on a stormy summer day.

 

I hope you’ve found this information useful. As I’ve said before, please feel free to reach out to my office with any comments or concerns. I look forward to hearing from you!

 

 

Sincerely,

 

State Representative Donna Lasinski

52nd House District