POSITIONS AND ENDORSEMENTS
Just a few of my core value positions include:
✔ Pro-Second Amendment
✔ Support Police, Firefighters and all first responders
✔Support current and veteran military personnel
✔ Strong families
✔ Business growth and success
✔ Low taxes
I have heard from residents across Mid-Michigan on a variety of topics, including, taxes, healthcare costs, families and small business support, and roads.
My bill, HB 4644, allows parents to add their unborn child as an exemption on their state income taxes. My bill passed the House and the Senate committee and is currently on the Senate floor for a vote.
I voted in favor of multiple pieces of legislation to provide much-needed tax relief for Michigan residents. These included:
-- Removing the 27-cent state sales tax on each gallon of gas. As gas prices have spiked to over $5.00/gallon, removing the state taxes would provide families with some relief at the pump. Governor Whitmer vetoed.
-- Lower Michigan's Granholm-era "temporary" income tax hike from 4.25% back down to 3.9%. Governor Whitmer vetoed.
-- Due to the increased costs on nearly all products, and therefore increased sales tax revenue, Michigan coffers have swelled to $2.-1/2 billion in extra revenue. I voted to send this money back to Michigan taxpayers. Governor Whitmer vetoed.
-- I voted a second time to reduce Michigan's income tax to help Michigan families. This time from 4.25% to 4.0%. Governor Whitmer vetoed. Again.
-- Taxes on pension income are not good for Michigan retirees on fixed income. I voted to Increase the standard deduction against all types of income for taxpayers who are 67 years old or older to $21,800 for a single return and $43,600 for a joint return. Governor Whitmer vetoed.
I supported a bipartisan package of bills that specifically helps lower the cost of prescription drugs, including insulin. HBs 4348, 4351 and 4352 addresses several issues, including the practices of pharmacy benefit managers (PBM) who use “gag clauses” to stand in the way of allowing your pharmacist to share options with you, stops requiring a patient to pay a co-pay that is higher than the selling cost of the drug, stops specific discriminating practices against pharmacies and against Medicaid patients under the Federal 340B discount program, and prohibits requiring pharmacies from agreeing to contracts that would not allow the disclosure of drug prices, comparative selling prices of generic and brand name drugs, among other consumer protections.
Families and Small Business Support
My bill, HB 5983, now Public Act 99, along with the companion bill, 5984, to allow Michigan resorts and hotels to safely offer swim-up bars in their pool facilities were signed into law. These bills were important for Michigan's tourism industry as they finally put Michigan on par with other states that have offered these amenities for years. Read the full story at Rep. Wakeman’s plan to allow swim-up bars in Michigan signed into law (gophouse.org)
Michigan families and businesses suffered a great deal during the pandemic.
As chair of the House Committee on Families, Children and Seniors, I worked hard to provide relief where possible to areas of our economy that fall within my committee’s prevue. One area in particular has been the inability for parents of daycare-aged children to get back to work, which has been a tremendous obstacle for businesses to reach full employee participation.
HBs 5041-5048, a bipartisan package that came before my committee, was the culmination of roughly two years of hard work in research and stakeholder input on matters surrounding childcare. Some of these findings include:
• More than 30% of family and group home childcare providers across MI have closed up shop since 2010
• 10 Michigan counties currently have ZERO licensed slots at childcare centers for children 30 months or younger.
• 75% of Michigan children live in in areas with limited access to licensed childcare.
HBs 5041-5048 makes impactful solutions to help shape Michigan's childcare market to be more reflective of the everyday needs of our children, working parents, and community childcare providers.
In summary, this package reflects changes to in-home daycares to safely allow increases to their child capacities, more assurances for parents on the safety of their children through more disclosures from childcare licensees to weed out bad actors, creates childcare networks through business support for in-home childcare providers, addresses child care deserts (areas lacking providers), provides a safe path for childcare providers to locate in multi-use buildings, and more pro-family support services as it relates to child care.
UPDATE: My bill in the childcare reform package has been signed into law.
HBs 5274-5280, 5534 & 5594 is another bill package that came before my House Committee on Families, Children and Seniors, which will help support both families and employers in Michigan.
In summary, these bills would refine the Central Registry within Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) that tracks perpetrators of serious abuse and neglect who represent ongoing risk to children in their care. The revised registry would provide greater due process to remove names of people who do not meet the new criteria for placement, and the new registry would only include people who likely pose a danger to children based on confirmed previous acts of serious abuse or neglect. Furthermore, the bills would eliminate automatic listings of names on the new Central Registry in certain circumstances and eliminate bifurcated timeframes for names staying on it.
This issue, in part, came directly from MDHHS, whereby they acknowledged there were far too many names on the Central Registry. It was also determined names were too easily permanently placed on the Central Registry even if there was no ensuing court ruling. These individuals, whose due process rights were violated, should have been able to have their names cleared from the Central Registry. Many of these victims of the system have been unable to become employed because their names remained on the Central Registry.
Throughout my terms in the House, we have provided budgets to the governor that earmarked current money to roads and in highest amounts in state history. The plans would have allowed simultaneous state AND local road repair. However, the governor repeatedly vetoed these funds. And in her 2020 State of the State Address, she proceeded to explain she was not going to wait any longer for the Legislature in favor of instituting her unilateral plan of bonding out funds for roads – a far more costly route on Michigan taxpayers as it adds to the state’s debt. What’s more, her unilateral plan significantly limits the kind of roads available for repair to those that begin with a letter, such as “M- ” , and limits the total number of roads available for repair. Fewer roads at a higher cost is not the answer!
I have traveled many roads throughout Mid-Michigan. The vast number of these roads are the roads residents live on and are not on the list of roads that can be repaired under the governor’s current bonding plan.
I then acted to put a plan together that works for Michigan residents – and one that does not require additional road funding. I worked with local road agencies, our County Road Commissions, to help fill this glaring gap in road repairs. My bill, HB 4965 of 2019, which is now Public Act 152 of 2020, transforms the previous funding allocation requirement into a fair and more useful tool for local road agencies while also addressing the worst roads first – no matter where they are.
Local road agencies were previously required to spend 75 percent of their allocated funds on primary roads, thereby leaving just 25 percent of the remaining funds to local roads. To do this, the local road agencies, in effect, had two road repair lists: one for primary roads and one for local roads. This decades-long 75% / 25% allocation requirement was antiquated and contributed greatly to our poor road conditions, as most road funding went only to primary roads. My bill does not change the amount of funds allocated to the local road agencies. Instead, it allows a smarter way for the local road agencies to spend current allocated taxpayer dollars by eliminating the 75% / 25% allocation requirement and allowing the local road agencies to place the worst roads first under a single list, which immediately places many of our local roads much higher on the priority list. Gone are the days when the same primary road will be repaired multiple times before the worst local roads are touched.
2022 RE-ELECTION ENDORSEMENTS
I am honored to announce my growing list of significant endorsements for my 2022 re-election campaign for the Michigan House of Representatives. These endorsements should serve as confirmation of my work to help residents, businesses and others in the district and across the state.
2022 LEGISLATOR and OTHER POLICTICAL ENDORSEMENTS
Senator Ken Horn - Saginaw and Genesee Counties
Senator Mike Goschka - Saginaw and Gratiot Counties
Speaker of the House Jason Wentworth
Majority Floor Leader Representative Ben Frederick - Saginaw and Shiawassee Counties
Representative Phil Green - Tuscola County
Former Mayor Donald Hembling - City of Vassar, Tuscola County
2022 ORGANIZATION ENDORSEMENTS
The organizations below have provided me with their EXCLUSIVE endorsement for the 97th House District.
ABC of Michigan -- Associated Builders and Contractors
Citizens for Traditional Values (CTV)
FOP -- Fraternal Order of Police, State Lodge of Michigan
Great Lakes Education Project (GLEP)
Michigan Chamber of Commerce
Michigan County Roads Association (Roads +)
Michigan Credit Union League
Michigan Freedom Network
Michigan Manufacturers Association
Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association
Michigan Retailers Association - Friend of Retail
National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Michigan PAC; 100% score
National Rifle Association (NRA); "A" Rating
Right to Life Michigan
Small Business Association of Michigan - Small Biz PAC
Michigan Bankers Association - Friend of Banking
2020 Re-Election Campaign Endorsements
I am pleased to announce that my re-election campaign for the 94th District of the Michigan House of Representatives has officially received several very significant endorsements ranging from core value positions on Life and Liberty, to policies that help local family businesses, including, agriculture, tourism, and a positive economy, education, and much more.
These endorsements should help provide you a clear understanding of where I stand on a wide range of issues. Additional details about my positions and my qualifications to be an endorsed candidate may be found on the websites of the organizations below.
My complete list of endorsements to-date now includes:
● Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
● County Road Association – Roads+™
● Home Builders Association of Michigan – Friends of Housing
● Michigan Credit Union League
● Michigan Fraternal Order of Police
● Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association
● Michigan State Medical Society MDPAC
● Police Officers Association of Michigan
● Saginaw Board of Realtors®
● Michigan Bankers Association - Friend of Banking