Zorn supports funding for firefighter cancer treatment

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate approved supplemental funding of $1 million to cover the treatment for firefighters with certain cancers, said Sen. Dale Zorn.

“Our firefighters rush into danger to save the lives of Michigan families — often without regard for their own lives or their health,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “We owe it to all our selfless and courageous firefighters to be there when they need help. I strongly supported creating this special fund to help firefighters fighting cancer.

“I am pleased to see the Senate come together in a bipartisan manner to provide this funding this year, and I look forward to including additional funds for next year as part of the ongoing budget process.”

Zorn supported legislation in 2014 to create the First Responder Presumed Coverage Fund. The law was signed in early 2015 to assist firefighters dealing with specific types of cancer that is presumed to be linked to exposure to carcinogens as part of their job.

Senate Bill 802, as amended and approved by the Senate, would appropriate $1 million into the fund for the current 2016 fiscal year.

Zorn is a co-sponsor of separate bipartisan legislation, sponsored by Sen. Curtis Hertel, Jr., D-East Lansing, which would allocate $3 million into the fund.

SB 802 now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.

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Sens. Kowall and Zorn announce April events honoring Vietnam era veterans

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Senate Majority Floor Leader Mike Kowall and Sen. Dale Zorn on Thursday announced that they are sponsoring two Vietnam veteran lapel-pinning ceremonies on Monday, April 11 in commemoration of the 50-year anniversary of the Vietnam War.

The senators are encouraging their constituents and all interested Michiganders to attend.

“Michigan’s Vietnam veterans, whether drafted or enlisted, served our country with honor. Tragically, too many returned home with little thanks for their service and not much help transitioning to civilian life,” said Kowall, R-White Lake. “This lapel-pinning ceremony is a way to thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War era and their families for their service and sacrifice on behalf of a grateful nation and the Michigan Legislature.”

The events, made possible by the United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration, will be held at the following times and locations:

Monday, April 11
11 a.m.
VFW Post 9656
4120 Piehl Road
Lambertville, MI 48144

Monday, April 11
2 p.m.
VFW Post 1138
400 Jones Ave.
Monroe, MI 48161

The symbolism attached to the Commemoration’s Vietnam veteran lapel pins is significant, Kowall said.

“The Commemoration honors all Vietnam veterans, whether they served in-country, in-theater, or were stationed elsewhere during the Vietnam War period,” he said. “All were called to serve and the overwhelming majority of these veterans served honorably and admirably.”

In addition to the lapel pin, Vietnam era veterans will be provided with a poster for their branch of service and “A Grateful Nation Thanks You” bumper sticker.

Kowall and other senators have held numerous lapel-pinning ceremonies, both in Lansing and throughout the state. The ceremonies are often held in a Veterans of Foreign Wars hall or American Legion post. Kowall partners with the senator of the district where the event is being held.

“I want to thank Senator Kowall for leading this effort,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “It has been an honor throughout my career to work and participate with our vets, especially on the Vietnam Veterans Museum and the Memorial Park projects. I look forward to celebrating the service of our Vietnam veterans.”

A special part of the lapel-pinning ceremonies is when the veterans gather for a group photo and indicate their name, branch of service, and dates served.

“It is always a moving time for me when I am able to present the lapel pins and personally thank each veteran for their service,” Kowall said.

**PHOTO ADVISORY** Sen. Zorn welcomes college honor society members to Michigan Capitol

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, welcomed Monroe County Community College (MCCC) President Dr. Kojo Quartey (right) and Phi Theta Kappa honor society members Kayla Hawley (left) and Megan Castiglione (center right), both from Monroe, to the Michigan Capitol on Wednesday. Hawley and Castiglione both attend MCCC and were in Lansing with the Phi Theta Kappa All-Michigan Academic Team.

Hawley is also a member of the National Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society and works in the college Math Den tutoring students. She is active in her church and community and will be transferring to Kent State University in the fall to obtain her degree in architecture.

Castiglione currently serves as the Phi Theta Kappa Tau Omicron chapter president and will be attending the University of Toledo this fall to pursue a degree in social work and psychology with a specialization in rehabilitation of victims of human trafficking and sexual abuse. She is also active in her church and in S.O.A.P, a human trafficking prevention outreach organization.

The students were honored with legislative tributes signed by Zorn and the governor.

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Editor’s note: A print-quality version of the above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting the senator’s website at: www.SenatorDaleZorn.com. Click on “Photowire” under the Media Center tab.

Senate approves Zorn bill to repeal ban of out-of-state fishing guides

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate on Tuesday unanimously approved Sen. Dale Zorn’s legislation to end the current ban on non-resident fishing guides in Michigan waters.

“This pro-tourism bill takes another step to ensure Michigan attracts more visitors to our state, especially fishing and outdoor enthusiasts,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “The reason behind the ban more than 25 years ago was to discourage out-of-state fishing guides from bringing their customers into Michigan, even though those customers must purchase non-resident fishing licenses.

“We are removing this ban — which likely violates the interstate commerce clause — because Michigan should be luring more anglers to our state, not putting up unnecessary road blocks.”

Senate Bill 773 would repeal the current prohibition against an out-of-state commercial fishing guide from operating as a commercial fishing guide in Michigan.

“We need to continue our efforts to protect Michigan waters and the fisheries that depend on them,” Zorn said. “Michigan currently has no requirements for a commercial fishing guide. While this current bill is about fairness, I support ongoing efforts to join neighboring states in developing requirements for residents and non-residents to act as commercial fishing guides in Michigan.”

The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.

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Sen. Dale Zorn welcomes MIS President Roger Curtis to the Michigan Capitol

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn welcomed Michigan International Speedway President Roger Curtis to the Michigan Capitol on Thursday.

Curtis is a resident of Onsted and was introduced to the Senate during session following a meeting with the Michigan Auto Racing Caucus.

“As the president of Michigan International Speedway, Roger Curtis oversees an organization that has invested millions of dollars in Michigan and generates more than $414 million in economic activity each year in our state,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “In addition to giving us two exciting NASCAR races each year, MIS under Curtis’ leadership is constantly adding festivals and events for our families to enjoy. Roger also serves on his local school board and generously donates his time to several community organizations.”

This year, MIS will host two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races: The FireKeepers Casino 400 in June and the Pure Michigan 400 in August.

MIS has expanded beyond auto racing to become a year-round destination with the addition of automotive research and development programs and non-motorsports events, including a Tough Mudder obstacle course and the Faster Horses three-day-long country music festival.

For more information about MIS and its upcoming events, visit www.mispeedway.com.

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Editor’s note: Video of Zorn introducing Curtis on the Senate floor is available at www.SenatorDaleZorn.com/video.

The above photographs are available by clicking on the images or by visiting Zorn’s website at www.SenatorDaleZorn.com. Click on “Photowire” under the Media Center tab.

Zorn applauds Milan for Michigan Main Street selection

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn announced on Friday that the city of Milan has been selected by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) as a participant in the Michigan Main Street program.

With the designation at the Selected Level, Milan receives five years of intensive technical assistance, with a focus on revitalization strategies designed to attract business investment, economic growth and job creation in the city’s central business districts.

“This Michigan Main Street designation is outstanding news for Milan and its residents,” said Zorn, R-Ida. “Improving our downtowns is about helping restore the heart of our communities. Being a part of the proven Michigan Main Street program will strengthen the ability of Milan to create a thriving downtown that helps attract job providers and young professionals and enhances the quality of life for its families.”

The Michigan Main Street program aims to create communities distinguished by a “sense of place.” A range of studies show that investing in creating a sense of place is an integral part of developing vibrant city centers and downtowns, and thereby making the state economically stronger.

Milan joins 19 other communities participating in the program at the five-year commitment and beyond, including Blissfield and Saline.

Since its inception in 2003, the Michigan Main Street program has been a catalyst for job growth, private investment and community engagement. It has spurred downtown development, including $200 million investment in buildings, infrastructure and private improvements and $67 of downtown private investment for every $1 of public funds invested.

Milan was selected after the city participated in the Associate Level of Main Street and a competitive application process that considered broad-based community support and historic preservation ethic.

For further information on the program, visit www.michiganmainstreetcenter.org.

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Zorn to hold office hour in Monroe on March 18

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn has announced that he will conduct a district office hour in Monroe on March 18.

Office hours are open to residents to express their opinions or concerns about state government or to request assistance with a state issue.

The office hour will be held from 9 to 10 a.m. at the Frenchtown Township Senior Center, 2786 Vivian Road in Monroe.

“I am holding this local office hour 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.”

To respect other patrons of the senior center, no town-hall style discussions will be entertained. No appointment is necessary.

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

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Sen. Dale Zorn comments on joint committee hearing on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Following the first joint committee hearing on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans, Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, issued the following statement:

“First off, I want to thank the auditor general’s office for their report on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans. They play an important and often overlooked role in Lansing and the residents of the state are better off because of their work.

“I can’t say the same for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

“I was sickened to read the report of violations in nine areas, from inadequate monitoring of prescriptions to ignoring complaints. Money was mismanaged. Staff ignored written policy and failed to fully investigate allegations of abuse and neglect.

“But the most disturbing finding — Number Four — was the direct care of the residents. In a home for veterans, who cared so much that they sacrificed to protect us and thought they were coming home to a state that cared, the fact that the department failed to fix one of the most basic functions of the home reported in the previous audit in April of 2013 is unacceptable.

“The state has failed. This department failed. The contractor failed. I cannot express enough my loss of trust with J2S Group Healthforce, and if their claim that they are fulfilling their contract is true, whoever wrote the contract should be fired.

“Without delay, it is imperative for us to solve this travesty and develop and implement an aggressive strategy that will provide superior care and a high quality of life for our veterans and their families.”

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**PHOTO & VIDEO ADVISORY** Sen. Zorn welcomes Pastor Witte to Capitol for Senate invocation

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, welcomed the Rev. Mark Witte to the Michigan Capitol on Tuesday. Witte serves as senior pastor at Grace Lutheran Church in Monroe and delivered the invocation before Senate session.

Editor’s note: The above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting Zorn’s website at www.SenatorDaleZorn.com. Click on “Photowire” under the Media Center tab.

Video of Miller’s invocation is available by clicking here or by visiting Zorn’s website and clicking on “Video” under the Media Center tab.

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Sen. Zorn to hold a coffee hour in Adrian on March 4

Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Dale Zorn has announced that he will conduct a district coffee hour in Adrian on Friday, March 4.

Coffee hours are open to residents to express their opinions or concerns about state government or to request assistance with a state issue.

The coffee hour will be held from 9 to 10 a.m. at The Family Kitchen, 2984 Treat St. in Adrian.

“I am holding this local coffee hour 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.”

To respect other patrons of the restaurant, no town-hall style discussions will be entertained. No appointment is necessary.

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

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