Sen. Schuitmaker joins Michigan Legislative Sportsmens Caucus

LANSING, Mich.—State Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker has joined the Michigan Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, the lawmaker announced today.

“I am excited to join with my legislative colleagues who are dedicated to promoting Michigan’s great outdoors and supporting the thousands of outdoorsmen and women in our state,” said Schuitmaker, R-Lawton. “Our hunters, anglers and outdoor enthusiasts care very much for our environment and for conservation efforts that keep Michigan beautiful, and it’s important that we work to preserve this legacy for future generations.”

The Michigan Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus is a bipartisan, bicameral group of state legislators who come together in support of sportsmen’s rights and to promote Michigan’s great outdoors.  The caucus achieves its goals through bipartisan legislation, educational programs, conservation initiatives and charitable donations.

According to the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, Michigan ranks among the top three in the nation for the number of hunters. Hunting and fishing alone provide more than $3 billion to the state’s economy and support thousands of jobs for Michigan residents.

The caucus is chaired by Sen. Mike Green and Rep. Jon Bumstead. 

Schuitmaker: Ending lawmakers lifetime healthcare benefits saves taxpayers millions

LANSING, Mich.—The state Senate approved legislation Wednesday that ends lifetime healthcare benefits for state legislators, a move that Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker said will save taxpayers more than $5 million per year.

“This is a matter of fairness and fiscal responsibility,” said Schuitmaker, R-Lawton. “State employees and workers in the private sector have to work upwards of 30 years to receive the type of retiree healthcare coverage state lawmakers get. As we continue to face budget deficits and cutbacks, continuing to fund lifetime healthcare for lawmakers is impractical and unsustainable.”

House Bill 4087 ends the practice that funded 90 percent of healthcare costs for lawmakers. The reform measure will strip lifetime benefits from 95 of the 148 sitting legislators, or more than 60 percent. Benefits will remain for existing retirees and for those who have vested by Jan. 1, 2013.

The bill, which received approval by the state House of Representatives in June, returns there for concurrence, whereupon it is expected to go to the governor for his signature.

Schuitmaker photo advisory: Gov. Snyder signs bill protecting against frivolous lawsuits

LANSING, Mich.—State Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker, R-Lawton, poses for a photo with Gov. Rick Snyder today after he signed into law Senate Bill 77, sponsored by Schuitmaker. The measure establishes a two-year limit for suing architects, engineers and professional surveyors for malpractice. The law does allow for a lawsuit to be filed within the two years should action be taken on a defect within six months of being discovered. The measure was assigned Public Act 162 of 2011.

To see print-quality versions of this and other photos of Schuitmaker, visit her website at www.senatortonyaschuitmaker.com and click the Photowire link