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I want to wish you all a Happy New Year! I am extremely humbled to be able to continue to serve as your state senator. To best serve you, I want to ensure you are keeping informed. I hope this monthly e-newsletter will serve that purpose. Thank you for taking the time to review it!

As always, my staff and I are always available to serve you! Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need any assistance.

Serving with and for you,

Senate Majority Leader
Mike Shirkey



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On Jan. 10, I was sworn in for a second term to serve as your state senator in the 16th District. It is an honor to serve the people of Branch, Hillsdale and Jackson counties. I want to thank all our constituents for continuing to have faith in us and for allowing us to serve you in the state Capitol. Our goal in the Senate is to do all we can to help improve the lives of Michiganders. It’s time to roll up our sleeves and get to work.




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The first Senate bill of the new legislative term addresses the number one problem for many Michigan motorists — the high cost of auto insurance.

Michigan drivers pay the highest car insurance rates in the country, averaging more than 80 percent higher than the national average! While the issue has been debated for some time, new legislation could finally help fix the problem and modernize the system. Senate Bill 1 would reduce the cost of auto insurance, offer more insurance options and ensure accident victims have the medical care they need.

Some of the goals of the Senate auto insurance reform include:
• Allowing drivers to choose the personal injury protection coverage that best meets their needs and budget;
• Reducing medical cost inflation related to auto insurance claims;
• Cracking down on fraud and conflicts of interest; and
• Allowing seniors on Medicare to use that coverage to cover their medical costs.

By making car insurance more affordable, the legislation also aims to reduce the number of uninsured drivers. SB 1 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Insurance and Banking for consideration.




Nearly 60 percent of U.S. teens report having been bullied or harassed online, including 16 percent who have experienced physical threats, according to a recent report by the Pew Research Center. Cyberbullying can occur through texting and digital messaging or online in social media forums or gaming.

Legislation now signed into law makes cyberbullying a crime in Michigan. Cyberbullying is defined as posting a message on a public media forum about another person with a clear intent to communicate fear of bodily harm or death and knowing it will be viewed as a threat. The new law also provides penalties for the threatening behavior. Public Acts 457 and 528 of 2018 take effect on March 28.



The legislation discussed above is just a small summary of the work being done in the state Capitol. Please visit to view a complete list of current and past bills and resolutions.





From the funds appropriated in the recently passed supplemental spending bill, $3.7 million will be awarded for road repairs between Francis Street and U.S. 127 in Jackson County.

I am delighted that the heart of the community in which I grew up will be receiving this funding. I know just how important this money is to make necessary repairs to improve the safety on these roads and ease the wear and tear on vehicles. This is a great start to improved road transportation in the area.


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The Great Start Collaborative offers a new program serving families in Hillsdale County.

Great Start Director Stephanie Rathburn said the Great Start Collaborative funds the Parents as Teachers Affiliate in Hillsdale County through funding from the Michigan Department of Education, as well as with Hillsdale County Community Foundation grant funding.

"This offering is unique in that the only eligibility requirements are age-related," Rathburn said. "Integro services pregnant moms and families who have a child under the age of 3, while Highfields services the parents of 3- to 5-year-olds."

The Parents as Teachers model is an evidence-based home visiting model designed to support parents as their child's best first teacher. The PAT model has four components: personal visits, group connections, child screenings and a resource network.

Click here to learn more.



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The Michigan High School Football Coaches Association has officially announced its Hall of Fame class for 2019, and the list includes one of Branch County’s most legendary football minds.

Longtime Union City head football coach Eric Tundevold will be honored by the MHSFCA on March 9 as he will be inducted, along with 13 other coaches from around the state, into the Hall of Fame.

Tundevold is a 1967 graduate of Union City High School and served as the Chargers head football coach from 1978 to 2011.

Congratulations Coach Tundevold!


Your 16th Senate District Map


The 16th State Senate District includes the counties of Branch, Hillsdale, and Jackson.

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Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the state Senate. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Please feel free to forward this on to others who may be interested in receiving the 16th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.


Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey
S-106 Capitol Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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