State Senate Approves Bill to Help Veterans Get Job Certification

VeteransWKZO – Radio

The Michigan Senate on Wednesday approved legislation to allow returning veterans to get credit for the skills and experience they acquired through military service for purposes of professional licenses in certain fields.

State Senator John Proos says that many veterans come home from military service with valuable experience, only to learn that their experience doesn’t count for anything when it comes to getting certified in order to work in certain jobs. He says this plan will help address that.

The package of bills approved would allow certain military training and experience of honorably discharged veterans to be counted for purposes of professional licensure as an emergency medical technician, firefighter, boiler operator and stationary engineer, mechanical contractor, and residential builder. Proos hopes to see Governor Rick Sndyer sign them before Veterans Day.

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State Tax Dollars Should Stay in Michigan to Support Michigan Jobs

WorkersMichigan spends more than $30 billion annually on goods and services, and using state businesses to meet our needs can improve efficient use of taxpayer dollars, boost our economy and create jobs.

That is why I co-sponsored a bill to give Michigan businesses a priority for state contracts when possible.

It’s a way to thank those who stuck it out during tough times. Most importantly, it simply makes sense.

Senate Bill 517 mirrors the “Buy Indiana Initiative” that gave a preference of up to 5 percent to Indiana-based businesses.

As we work hard to continue Michigan’s turnaround, we must support our home team. Michigan-based businesses and the workers they employ pay taxes help that support vital services like education and public safety.

We owe it to all Michigan residents that we remain responsible and efficient with their tax dollars. That includes ensuring our Michigan tax dollars first go to support Michigan companies and Michigan jobs.

The 2013 Pure Michigan Travel Guide illustrates the need for a state preference. An Iowa firm won the contract to put together the guide’s three seasonal issues, even though a Michigan-based company’s bid was $300,000 less.

I strongly support Pure Michigan because it helps attract jobs and tourists to our state. That’s why I’m so disappointed that a Michigan company and its workers were not picked to design the state’s travel guide when their bid would have actually saved the state money.

Many businesses and organizations have pledged to Buy Michigan. The state should do the same.

Van Buren County Gets Grant For Swift and Sure

Law Enforcement Endorsement PicWSJM – Radio

Jason Scott Reporting

The Swift and Sure Probation Program is expanding. State Senator John Proos says Van Buren County has accepted a $250,000 grant to set it up, making it the third county in Southwest Michigan to establish the cost-saving program.

Berrien County has had the program for three years. Since its inception positive drug tests have fallen by 70%. Cass County received over $280,000 to establish a similar system back in February.

Prescription Drug Abuse Summit Held in Lansing

Gribler_Proos_Meth SigningWSJM – Radio

Michael Arney Reporting

A two-day summit on combating prescription drug abuse wraps up Wednesday in Lansing. State Senator John Proos calls it an epidemic that’s a growing problem.

State, local and national leaders are joining with Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette to try to come up with ways to fight the drug issues.

Legislation sponsored by Proos would require the state police to maintain a database of everyone convicted of a meth-related offense in the state. Those who are on the list would have to have a doctor’s prescription for ten years to buy medicine containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, used to fight colds and to cook meth.

Proos Talks Broadband Expansion in Michigan

South Haven CTE Capitol DayWKZO- Radio

Michigan lawmakers on Thursday listened in on a discussion about expanding broadband internet access to new areas in the the state.

State Senator John Proos says that the 2013 Michigan Broadband Conference was held partly to talk about underserved areas of the state when it comes to high speed service. He says that it’s essential to get the technology everywhere in Michigan so that the state can compete economically and in education.

As the designated entity for broadband mapping and planning in the state, Connect Michigan is a public-private partnership between the Michigan Public Service Commission and Connected Nation. It works with local governments, businesses, and residents to achieve the goal of increasing broadband service in underserved areas. Proos says that everyone should look at http://www.ConnectMI.org to find out about how they can help with that effort.

Proos Visits Michigan Women’s Commission, Talks Human Trafficking

Proos_Womens Commission Human TraffickingWSJM – Radio

Jason Scott Reporting

Human trafficking is the world’s second largest criminal industry and a major problem in Michigan, according to state Senator John Proos.

This week he talked with the Michigan Women’s Commission about recently introduced legislation to combat the crime.

Proos’ bills give victims a chance to sue for restitution, also an opportunity for a hearing where a judge could clear convictions from their record if the offenses were committed as a result of being trafficked.

Van Buren County Students Go to Lansing For Student Technology Day

ImageWKZO Radio

It was Student Technology Day at the State Capitol Wednesday, and some Van Buren County youths were there to show off some of the work they’ve been doing. State Senator John Proos says that he invited the kids up from South Haven’s Baseline Middle School and North Shore Elementary to show what technology related projects they’ve been working on in class.

Proos thinks it was good for lawmakers to get a first hand look at how technology can be incorporated in schools, noting that he work these Van Buren County youths have been doing demonstrates how technology can bring together elements like math and science, and teach cooperation.

Proos is pushing for more technology based vocational education in the state. He’s sponsored a bill that would help more schools bring technology to classrooms and promote collaboration between schools and job providers for career-based teaching into the curriculum.