Zorn’s register of deeds updates signed

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Gov. Rick Snyder on Wednesday signed Sen. Dale Zorn’s legislation as part of a bipartisan effort to modernize many of the state’s laws governing county registers of deeds.

Registers of deeds are tasked with accepting and recording all legal documents and instruments pertaining to the transfer and encumbrance of real property located within each county. State laws provide direction for their actions and responsibilities as well as requirements for individuals looking to record documents.

“I want to thank the Michigan Association of Register of Deeds for bringing the issue to the Legislature and helping fix it,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “The purpose of these updates is to enable the registers of deeds throughout our state to keep up with new technologies, eliminate errors, improve services to the public and better protect vital information.”

Zorn sponsored three of the 10 bills. Senate Bills 731-740, now Public Acts 191-200 of 2018, clarify and codify current register of deeds practices and the use of technology when recording documents.

The new laws include improving the use of electronic systems in the recording process, providing a uniform method for handling sensitive personal information and ensuring the accurate translation of property documents from across the world.

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**MEDIA ADVISORY** Zorn, Bellino to highlight state funding for key road project in Monroe County

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn and Rep. Joe Bellino will join local officials for a press conference on Wednesday, June 20 highlighting state funding in the recently approved state budget to make much-needed improvements to South Stoney Creek Road.

Who:
Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida;
Rep. Joe Bellino, R-Monroe;
Randy Pierce, Monroe County Road Commission managing director;
Officials from Frenchtown, Ash and Exeter townships; and
Area residents.

What:
A press conference to highlight funding included in the recently approved state budget to help fix South Stoney Creek Road.

When:
Wednesday, June 20 at 10 a.m.

Where:
Intersection of South Stoney Creek Road and Sumpter Road near the Exeter Township Volunteer Fire Department
11120 Sumpter Road
Carleton

Note:
The approved 2018-19 state budget includes $3.35 million for road repairs on South Stoney Creek Road. The state funds will be used to replace the road in Frenchtown, Ash and Exeter townships.

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Zorn’s state trooper memorial highway bill sent to governor

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Legislature on Tuesday finalized Sen. Dale Zorn’s legislation to honor Michigan State Police Trooper Calvin Jones, who was killed when his patrol car crashed during a pursuit on Feb. 10, 1956 on M-52 south of Adrian.

“Our state troopers and local law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to keep our families safe, and too often they never return home,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “Calvin Jones was a World War II veteran and a family man who also was the first state trooper to be killed in the line of duty in Lenawee County.”

Senate Bill 459 would designate a portion of M-52 from Carleton Road to the Ohio border as the “Trooper Calvin R. Jones Memorial Highway.”

The bill received unanimous support in both the House and Senate and now heads to the governor to be signed.

“The life and sacrifice of Trooper Jones are great examples of why Michigan created the Memorial Highway Act,” Zorn said. “I look forward to seeing the governor sign this bill and permanently recognize a fearless man who died serving and protecting our community.”

Jones’ daughter, Patricia Rowley, and her husband Claude Rowley attended a Senate Transportation Committee meeting in February in support of the bill. Lenawee County Commissioner Jim Driskill knew Trooper Jones, who was a close friend of his father, and testified in support of Zorn’s bill.

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Editor’s note: The above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting www.SenatorDaleZorn.com/Photowire.

Sen. Zorn announces June coffee hours

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn has announced that he will conduct district coffee hours this month in Tecumseh on June 18 and in Maybee on June 25.

Coffee hours are open to residents to express their opinions or concerns about state government or to request assistance with a state issue. No appointment is necessary.

The first coffee hour will be held Monday, June 18 from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at City Limits Diner and Pancake House, 114 W. Logan St. in Tecumseh.

The second coffee hour will be held on Monday, June 25 from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the new Maybee Village Hall, 9051 Raisin St. in Maybee.

“I am holding these local coffee hours in order to help provide residents a convenient opportunity to meet with me in person,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “My aim is to provide the best service possible for the hardworking people of the 17th District. I look forward to continuing a regular series of meetings throughout the district and hearing directly from constituents in one-on-one discussions.”

Residents who are unable to attend the coffee hours may contact Zorn’s office at (517) 373-3543 or via e-mail at SenDZorn@senate.michigan.gov.

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**MEDIA ADVISORY** Sen. Zorn, Maj. Gen. Stone to discuss super armory coming to Dundee

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn has announced that he and Maj. Gen. Michael A. Stone of the Michigan Army National Guard will attend a public meeting on June 14 to discuss the recently announced super armory project in Dundee and why the site was selected.

Who:
Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida;
Maj. Gen. Michael A. Stone, Michigan Army National Guard and commander of the 46th Military Police Command;
Officials from Monroe Bank & Trust; and
Area residents.

What:
A public reception highlighting the acquisition of 44 acres of land in Dundee for a new Michigan National Guard super armory.

When:
Thursday, June 14 at 6 p.m.
(Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres at 5:30 p.m.)

Where:
Monroe Bank & Trust Headquarters
10 Washington St.
Fourth floor
Monroe

Note:
If you plan on attending the event, please RSVP to Paul Egnatuk at 269-209-3867.

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Zorn: 2019 budget invests more in education and roads

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn on Tuesday supported a finalized fiscal year 2019 state budget that increases investments in key priorities, including educating Michigan students and improving the roads.

“As we have every year I have been in the Legislature, we completed a balanced budget ahead of schedule — allowing local governments and schools to set their budgets using real numbers,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “This budget continues to make smart investments in the top priorities facing Michigan families and businesses while still living within our means.

“Every school will see increased funding in this budget — with most schools receiving the largest per-pupil increase in 17 years — and we are putting an additional $330 million into fixing our roads and bridges.”

The education budget invests nearly $14.8 billion in K-12 education, which includes a foundation allowance increase of between $120 and $240 per pupil and a $1.3 billion contribution into the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System (MPSERS) to control costs, reduce debt and meet the needs of current retired teachers.

The budget also features investments in school safety initiatives, including more funding for the OK2SAY confidential tip-line program, $30 million for mental health support services in schools, and $25 million for school security improvements.

“To ensure that Michigan schools are safe places for kids to learn, we are investing $58 million for our schools and communities to make the necessary safety improvements to protect our students,” Zorn said. “Last year, a group of local education leaders and my office studied ways to improve partnerships between area schools and Jackson College and Monroe Community College to reduce the need for remedial education. This budget builds on that collaboration and includes $25,000 to continue that work.”

The entire state budget plan features $6 million to support rural hospitals, a $9.25 million boost for local public health departments, a $22.5 million increase in local revenue sharing, $40.9 million for skilled trades training and $100 million to fully fund the Marshall Plan for Talent.

“This budget makes wise investments to meet our challenges, educate our children, provide essential services, and to attract tourists and job creators to Michigan,” Zorn said. “Another local project we were able to include is an additional $45,000 to help Lenawee County farmers maintain filter strips that prevent phosphorous from flowing into Lake Erie.”

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Zorn supports funding for key road project in Monroe County

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn on Tuesday supported funding for a local road project as part of the state’s finalized fiscal year 2019 state budget.

“Stoney Creek Road has been in bad shape for far too long and the townships don’t have the resources to fix it,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “Even with large increases in road funding, it would have taken the county a long time to get this project done. It has been a pleasure to work with the local township and road commission officials to find the best way to fix Stoney Creek Road and to secure the funding for the repairs.

“I am proud that together with Representatives Bellino and Sheppard, we were able to get the project jump started in this budget.”

The approved 2018-19 state budget includes $3.35 million for the road repairs. The state funds will be used to replace the road in Frenchtown, Ash, London and Exeter townships.

“The entire state benefits from the energy produced at the Fermi II plant, and it’s only fitting the state pitch in to get this critical evacuation route fixed,” Zorn said.

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***Audio Advisory*** Zorn encourages residents to take advantage of free fishing this weekend

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, is reminding Michigan residents and out-of-state visitors that the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) Summer Free Fishing Weekend is this Saturday and Sunday, June 9 and 10.

The DNR program enables residents and nonresidents to fish without a license on these two days for all species on all waters, though all other fishing regulations still apply. Entry into state public boating access sites, state parks and recreation areas is also free of charge.

Since 1986, Michigan has celebrated the free weekend as a way to promote awareness of the state’s vast aquatic resources and to give families a great chance to pass along the joy of fishing to the next generation. For more information, visit www.Michigan.gov/FreeFishing.

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Editor’s note: Audio of Zorn’s public service announcement may be downloaded at www.SenatorDaleZorn.com/Audio.

Zorn concerned about savings from auto insurance reform

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, released the following statement on Thursday after voting against Senate Bills 787 and 1014, which would make reforms to Michigan’s auto no-fault insurance law.

“The high cost of auto insurance affects everyone, even those who are not insured. Any auto insurance reform must provide real relief for the ratepayer and reduce the number of uninsured drivers.

“I am not convinced these bills would do that. While some may get minor relief, if they are injured, the costs for their medical care would just be shifted off auto insurance and onto the rest of us taxpayers in the form of Medicare or Medicaid and could cause an increase in medical bankruptcies.

“I did support an amendment that would have given a real rate reduction of 10 percent for those who bought the $50,000 plan. Since these bills did not contain any real across-the-board rate reduction, but rather could increase insurance rates, I voted against them.

“Reforms such as capping fees on medical services to bring them in line with health care, workers’ compensation and Medicaid rates have the potential for significant rate reductions for every Michigan driver.

“As these bills head to the House for their consideration, I will remain engaged to find meaningful reforms to auto no-fault insurance.”

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Senate approves Zorn school safety bills

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate on Thursday approved Sen. Dale Zorn’s legislation to help keep students safe.

“Michigan children deserve to have safe schools where they can learn the skills they need to succeed and be productive citizens,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “Michigan’s OK2SAY program is a 24-hour-a-day hotline that gives students a safe and confidential way to report suspicious or threatening behavior. It has done a fantastic job in helping protect students and save lives.”

OK2SAY enables students to report tips by phone, text message, and email, and through a website or an app. In 2017, the program received 4,605 tips, an increase of 37 percent from 2016.

“In real time, OK2SAY connects tip providers to the state police, who assess the situation and then refer the information to the appropriate school officials or law enforcement,” Zorn said. “However, sometimes threats to students’ safety occur outside of school hours. My legislation would ensure that at least one school official is available to receive information about threats at any time so he or she can take any necessary action to prevent a tragedy.”

Senate Bill 991 would require, at least twice a year, a governing body of a school to provide the state police with the current emergency contact information for a school official who would receive information submitted through the state school safety hotline — and any accompanying analysis of a potential threat — 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“This bill is part of a comprehensive Senate effort to enact commonsense, effective solutions to keep our students safe,” Zorn said.

The Senate school safety package also includes SB 959, Zorn’s legislation to require the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) to develop statewide training standards for active-violence situations in schools. By January 2020, licensed law enforcement officers would be required to complete the active-violence response training.

“Training and preparation can save lives,” Zorn said. “When it comes to protecting our schools, it is critical that students, school staff and law enforcement all know what to do to prevent a tragedy and how to respond if a situation occurs.”

Additional Senate school safety legislative measures include:
SB 982 to create the Office of School Safety within the state police to update school safety practices, offer training to school staff and oversee use of school safety grants;
SB 983 to require school districts to conduct a safety assessment with a local law enforcement agency for each school building by the 2019-2020 school year and at least every two years thereafter and require school districts to develop an emergency operations plan by Jan. 1, 2020;
SB 957 to eliminate the sunset on the OK2SAY program;
SB 958 to require schools to anonymously report thwarted incidents of attempted acts of violence on school grounds or threats of violence made on or off school grounds; and
• SB 990 to require schools to work with local law enforcement on new construction or upgrades to school buildings.

“These legislative reforms are on top of a budget agreement to dedicate $58 million toward school safety initiatives, such as improving access to mental health programs, enhancing OK2SAY awareness and securing our schools,” Zorn said.

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Editor’s note: Audio comments by Zorn will be available at www.SenatorDaleZorn.com/Audio.