Senator Wayne Schmidt

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Schmidt to host February coffee hours throughout 37th District

Since being elected to represent the 37th District in the state Senate, I have remained committed to holding office hours in various communities throughout Northwest Michigan and the Upper Peninsula.

I will be available to answer questions, provide information and assistance, as well as take suggestions on issues affecting communities and businesses in the district.

Please, feel free to stop in. No appointment is necessary.

For more information or to contact my office at or call 517-373-2413.

February coffee hours are as follows:

Monday, Feb. 12 10 - 11 a.m. Elk Rapids District Library 300 Isle of Pines Drive Elk Rapids
Monday, Feb. 12 Noon - 1 p.m. East Jordan City Hall 201 Main St. East Jordan
Monday, Feb. 12 2 - 3 p.m. Side Door Saloon 1200 N. U.S. 31 Petoskey
Monday, Feb. 12 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. State Street Coffee Company 211 W. State St. Cheboygan
Friday, Feb. 16 11 a.m. - noon Bentley's B-M-L Cafe 62 N. State St. St. Ignace
Friday, Feb. 16 1 - 2 p.m. Cup of the Day 406 Ashmun St. Sault Ste. Marie
Friday, Feb. 16 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Timber Charlie's 110 Newberry Ave. Newberry
Monday, Feb. 19 9 - 10 a.m. Loon's Nest 115 E. State St. Fife Lake

Schmidt supports tax relief bills

I recently supported Senate legislation to help hardworking Michigan taxpayers keep more of the money they earn. Senate Bills 748-750 protect the personal exemption on state and local income taxes and deliver additional tax relief.

While recent federal tax reform lowers tax rates and doubles the standard deduction, it also effectively ends the federal personal exemption. Since the state personal exemption is based on the federal return, Michigan taxpayers would be unable to claim personal exemptions on their state income taxes. The bills make the necessary changes to keep the personal exemption and boost the exemption as well. In 2018, the exemption would be $4,500. It would increase by $100 each year through 2020 and then bump up to $5,000 in 2021.

The legislation also helps families who provide necessary care for children, elderly parents or disabled family members by creating a new dependent care tax credit.

This is a much-needed break for many Michigan families. I was pleased the Senate approved my amendment to SB 748 that would grant relief to families, while also ensuring the School Aid Fund does not take a hit.

The bills have been sent to the House for further consideration.

Schmidt backs override to speed up sales tax relief

The Legislature recently voted to override the governor's veto of legislation to accelerate "sales tax on the difference" reform when consumers purchase a vehicle. The legislation has now been assigned Public Acts 1 and 2 of 2018 with immediate effect.

The move speeds up the phase-in of sales tax relief when consumers trade in their car to buy a new one. The legislation increases the cap on the trade-in value to $4,000 beginning Jan. 1, 2018 and to $5,000 by Jan. 1, 2019. The cap increases by $1,000 each year until fully implemented in 2028.

Michigan was one of only six states - and the only Great Lakes state - that taxed the value of trade-ins. I am pleased the new laws will help consumers save money when they buy a car.

Schmidt counts down to I-500

The Sault Ste. Marie International I-500 snowmobile race kicked off its festivities last week; though this year is unlike the others. 2018 marks the 50th Anniversary of the race and surrounding celebrations.

For decades, tens of thousands of diehard fans and enthusiasts have come to enjoy the fun the I-500 brings.

We are now less than 24 hours from the big race! I hope you and your family are able to get out and enjoy the Pure Michigan winter season at this year's event. For more information, please visit
Download images to view this graphic

Download graphics to view this imageSchmidt hosts Traverse City business owner at 2018 State of the State address

Last week I had the pleasure of welcoming Russ Knopp to the Michigan Capitol for Gov. Rick Snyder's 2018 State of the State address.

Russ and his wife Leslie own Comfort Keepers in Traverse City.

Free Fishing weekend

Download graphics to view this imageAnglers, check out Michigan's annual Winter Free Fishing Weekend! This great event falls on Feb. 17 and 18 this year. All fishing license fees are waived for residents and out-of-state visitors on both inland and Great Lakes waters for the two days. All other fishing regulations still apply.

Visit for information on special events and activities. A Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Recreation Passport will not be required at any state park or recreation area during the free fishing weekend.

Save money: Buy your Recreation Passport when renewing car registration

Download graphics to view this imageA Recreation Passport provides easy access to more than 100 state parks and recreation areas in Michigan's great outdoors.

Starting this year, the DNR is adding a $5 fee when buying the passport at state parks. Motorists can save money by buying the Recreation Passport online at, by mail or at a branch office when they renew their car registration through the secretary of state. When motorists purchase a Recreation Passport while renewing their vehicle registration, it also allows them to access Passport Perks, a statewide shopping discount program. Visit to locate discounts by city and category.



SD37 Map
The 37th Senate District is made up of 8 counties, which includes: Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Chippewa, Emmet, Grand Traverse, Luce, and Mackinac.

Senator Wayne Schmidt

4600 Connie Binsfeld Bldg. P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

Phone: (517) 373-2413

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