Rep. Sharon Tyler: Showing positive resultsPublished 9:18pm Wednesday, November 16, 2011
The Legislature has been consistent in conquering goals set in place back in January for a stronger Michigan with lasting results. The unemployment rate is already falling lower than when we addressed our bold agenda. We have tackled many difficult challenges and there are many more to go. Our top priority remains to foster job creation so families don’t leave the state and our children can enjoy the benefits Michigan once offered.
In helping Michigan families protect their children, the House recently passed a bill that would create an anti-bullying law for Michigan schools. The bill refers to the proposed law as “Matt’s Safe School Law,” in reference to Matt Epling, an East Lansing high school student who committed suicide in 2002 after being bullied. People on all points of the political spectrum have agreed that bullying is a serious problem and action in the House was necessary. Every student deserves the opportunity to learn in an environment free from harm.
The bill would give school districts six months to adopt and implement a policy prohibiting bullying at schools. The policy must be filed with the state Department of Education, which is required to file a report with the state Legislature within one year regarding the status of policies statewide. Matt’s Safe School Law protects all students equally, and asks schools to adopt policies that help put an end to bullying.
In continuing our efforts to help Michigan residents and families, the House also passed legislation ending extra monetary punishments for drivers with points on their license, in the event that those points are accumulated through minor violations. Currently, drivers with seven or more points on their license will be charged extra fees by the state, often referred to as “driver responsibility fees.” Many working families have trouble putting food on the table, let alone having to pay excessive state fees to drive to work or drop off their children at school, because of minor infractions.
I am extremely pleased the House passed legislation that would remove existing double fees levied against drivers by discounting those points gained through minor offenses, such as a failure to provide proof of insurance.
As lawmakers continue to look for ways to make Michigan a national leader in competitiveness, the House Regulatory Reform Committee approved legislation that would legalize consumer-grade fireworks in Michigan, allowing residents the freedom to possess and use the fireworks without fear of penalty. Fireworks are currently available in Indiana and this legislation would allow Michigan the same business opportunities as our neighbors across the border. Local businesses benefit as Michiganders would be able to purchase fireworks here at home, contributing to the local economy and even spurring job creation.
I am persistent in helping Michigan push forward as the Legislature looks at new and innovative ways to bring more jobs to Michigan and boost the local economy. The initial signs are overwhelmingly positive as things are starting to look up for Michigan.
I look forward to hearing your comments on these important issues. Please feel free to contact me by calling (888) 373-0078 or emailing email@example.com.