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Gov. Whitmer Signs Legislation to Secure Good-Paying American Jobs, Support Health Care Workers, and Lower Costs for Michiganders

Michigan Business Network
March 8, 2023 3:00 PM

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LANSING, Mich – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a bipartisan supplemental bill to power economic development and create thousands of good-paying American jobs, improve retention and recruitment in the healthcare workforce, lower the cost of energy-efficient home repairs, and build affordable housing.  

“I’m proud to sign this bipartisan legislation to grow our economy, protect public health, and lower costs for families,” said Governor Whitmer. “We are coming together to recruit and retain health care workers, invest in regional economic development and infrastructure to secure thousands of good-paying American manufacturing jobs, and lower utility costs for families. I look forward to working with my legislative partners to build on this legislation to continue lowering costs, creating jobs, and investing in communities across Michigan.” 

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Historic Economic Development and Infrastructure Upgrades 

Nearly $300 million will support future business growth in Marshall, securing 2,500 good-paying manufacturing jobs. The supplemental also provides $330 million to make community improvements in Marshall. The funds will be used to expand M-96 from two lanes to four, make intersection upgrades, and reconstruct interchanges on I-94 and I-69.    

"This historic opportunity is an investment in people,” said State Rep. Jim Haadsma (D-Battle Creek). “I’m so pleased Ford Motor Company chose Calhoun County and I’m confident this influx of good paying jobs will put people on notice that Michigan is on the right track.”   

“We know that there is a critical worker shortage in the healthcare industry,” said Sen. Veronica Klinefelt (D-Eastpointe). This $75 million investment to recruit and retain health care workers is much needed and will go far in bringing jobs and opportunity to our communities.”   

“Our union is grateful to the governor for her commitment to strengthening the automotive industry and keeping jobs in Michigan,” said Ray Curry, UAW president. “This supplemental bill includes nearly $300 million for future business growth in Marshall which will lead to 2,500 good-paying manufacturing jobs which we will organize into good-paying union jobs. This will benefit workers, their families, and the entire community.”   

Investing in Health Care Recruitment and Retention 

The bill will provide $75 million to recruit and retain healthcare workers. These funds can be used to increase wages for staff and provide workforce retention bonuses as well as support programs that provide tuition assistance, student loan support, workforce grants, and training. Additionally, $63.5 million will fund a 2% rate increase for nursing homes.   

"Nursing homes in Michigan are facing a staffing crisis and we applaud Governor Whitmer and the legislature for leaning in to making real, meaningful investments in Nursing Home Workforce Development,” said Jennifer Root, SEIU Michigan. “We know that investing in these careers will mean better jobs, higher quality of care, and will benefit all Michigan communities." 

Community Development and Affordable Housing 

The supplemental also addresses proposals laid out in Governor Whitmer’s 2024 budget recommendation, reappropriating $150 million to build affordable housing across the state and setting aside $212 million for home energy rebates for home appliances, heating and cooling systems, electric vehicle chargers, and solar installation and battery storage.    

The supplemental delivers $60 million in grants for acquisition, planning, construction, programming, and development for community centers. This funding will support local governments, nonprofits, and faith-based institutions with grants of up to $2.5 million each. At least 50% of these grants are required to go to areas below the median income and areas or organizations that were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.   

“The supplemental bill to allocate more funding for community centers will provide a much-needed boost to the neighborhoods that depend on community centers for resources for their families,” said Antonio Parker, MLK Center Director, City of Jackson. “Community centers play a vital role in shaping the lives of many people in our communities.”   

“Lansing Parks & Recreation operates four aging community centers that provide incredible programming to residents across the city. During the pandemic these centers stayed open to provide shelter for those in need, study spaces for students, and so much more. Many of our facilities are old and need a lot of work. Grant funding like this will be welcome by communities across the state as we continue to meet the needs of people of all ages,” stated Brett Kaschinske, Director of Lansing Parks & Recreation.   

Supporting Community Health and Wellbeing 

The legislation also delivers $750,000 in grants to groups that provide outreach for suicide prevention services.   

“We know veterans are 57% more likely to commit suicide than those who haven’t served, and we are doing everything we can to support our former service members and their families,” said Adam Hollier, Director of the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. “This investment in veteran suicide prevention in Michigan will provide MVAA the needed resources to begin innovative programs that keep more of our heroes from taking their own lives.”   

Lastly, the bill improves public safety with $10.8 million to begin the Community Violence Intervention initiative and provide grants to community-based organizations that provide community violence intervention services.   

“Addressing the gun violence epidemic means applying a holistic approach. This includes focusing on addressing daily gun violence, which kills far more people than mass shootings, and disproportionately affects communities of color,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, the grassroots arm of Everytown for Gun Safety. “We appreciate Governor Whitmer, Lt. Governor Gilchrist, and the Michigan state legislature for prioritizing investments in Community Violence Intervention programming and highlighting the importance of these lifesaving gun violence prevention programs. These programs are the bedrock of the gun safety movement and need to be properly funded.” 



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