Merry Chirstmas to All!

I would like to wish each of you a Merry Christmas. I hope you all are able to spend the holidays with family and friends as you look forward to a new year full of possibilities.  I am truly blessed to be able to gather with my family, whose love and support gives me the strength to make the tough decisions to build a better Michigan.

Looking back at 2012, I am proud of what we accomplished to continue Michigan’s positive momentum toward recovery and prosperity.

As a result of our proactive approach, we have more jobs, a better economic outlook and a more fiscally sound budget than when I took office nearly two years ago.

My focus continues to be identifying and enacting innovative ideas to give all Michigan residents more opportunities and more freedom.

This year these solutions included enhancing education options and support, standing up for small business job providers, helping our farmers and giving all Michigan workers the freedom to choose. I am ready to start 2013 rechargedwith positive energy to build upon our accomplishments of more jobs and renewed liberty for everyone in Southwest Michigan.

This holiday season, I encourage you to send a letter of support and thanks to the men and women serving our country overseas who cannot be with their families for Christmas. It is a simple way to make their holiday a little brighter. You may mail your letters to:

Blue Star Mothers;
P.O.Box 76
Stevensville, MI 49127.

Merry Christmas to you and your family, and have a happy and healthy New Year. God Bless.

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Senate Passes Proos’ “Swift and Sure” Program

WSJM – Radio

The state Senate has approved legislation from Senator John Proos to create what’s called the “Swift and Sure” program for parolees and those on probation. Proos says it’s based on a successful program out of Hawaii that cut the crime rate and drug use by probationers.

The St. Joseph Republican said not only will the program help those who are out of jail by giving them support to prevent more crime, it will also save the Michigan Department of Corrections money. Proos says the 2012 fiscal year’s budget included “Swift and Sure” as a pilot program for counties that have combined criminal and drug courts, and now in the 2013 budget, more counties will be able to apply for the program if the bills pass the House and are signed by Governor Snyder.

 

Finalized State Budget Focuses on Living Within our Means

Michigan has once again enacted a balanced, fiscally responsible budget before July that supports vital services and improves accountability in government.

The 2013 budget addresses our long-term debts and funds priorities, while also making the state live within its means – just as Southwest Michigan families do every day.

Most importantly, the budget focuses on making the tough, but right decisions to revitalize our state. It builds on the reforms we made to energize our economy and improve our jobs climate. Those changes are already producing results in less unemployment, more jobs, reduced debt and positive economic growth.

Michigan’s economic turnaround and fiscal restraint have also resulted in additional resources for us to put towards education and public safety.

School Aid funding is increased by more than $200 million, including money to raise the minimum foundation allowance by $120 per student. Our public universities and community colleges will also see increases of more than 3 percent.

The finalized budget helps keep our communities safe by enabling the Michigan State Police to put 180 new troopers on the roads, and it reserves $140 million more in the state’s rainy day fund to improve our credit rating and end the days of gridlock and government shutdowns.

We understand that many people are still struggling, so we included $90 million in income tax relief for all hard-working Michigan families.

With the budget done, I will continue my efforts to create a positive climate in Michigan for creating jobs and make your government more efficient and accountable to the people.

Proos Touts Progress Made

Dowagiac Daily News

By John Eby

April 15, 2012

CASSOPOLIS — “While the numbers are few today, the believers are many,” state Sen. John Proos told a dozen people Sunday afternoon at Cass County Tea Party’s third annual Tax Day rally beside the 1899 courthouse. “They couldn’t practice religion or live in a free society,” Proos, who was accompanied by his daughter, Elena, said.

“Our nation became what it is today because it was founded on Christian principles of freedom and a government of, by and for the people. Founders left us with our Constitution, which has withstood the test of time. People you send to represent you need to remember that. The believers need to be reminded. That’s the key today.”

The St. Joseph Republican said Michigan ist on a better track that benefits the futures of children such as his own Elena, Jack and Nora.

“What we do today we leave for them tomorrow, and I don’t want to leave them something worse. When jobs were the question, it was clear we weren’t competitive to keep the ones we already had and weren’t doing enough to attract jobs.

“We were picking winners and losers as a government because we were desperate for jobs to come to Michigan. That’s what it was during eight years of the Granholm administration. We saw the loss of a million jobs.

“When I started as your senator, Cass County was at 11.2 percent unemployment. Today, it’s at 8 percent. We can be better, but it’s improving.” because we looked at the equation and value competitiveness and the employer-employee relationship that is going to make Michigan strong again.”

We’re getting out of the way and letting businesses compete. Those who work hard of their own interest and effort are given the best chance to succeed without impediments by the government. Things are in a much better position than before. Without question, your tax dollars need to be held accountable in Lansing,” such as $2 billion the Department of Corrections consumes, which “cannot stand” because it could otherwise be spent on infrastructure or education. We’re not Doubting Thomases — we’re hopeful for our future and remember our country was founded on freedom from tyranny.”

Rep. Proos Addresses Crunch to get State Budget Balanced

WNDU

Michigan has taken a big step forward in easing budget woes. On Thursday, Jennifer Granholm signed into law a bill that transfers more than $200 million from a school aid fund surplus into the state’s general fund, which is facing a $300 million deficit this fiscal year.

But lawmakers still need to get rid of a deficit of about $484 million for the budget year beginning on October 1st and they have less than a month to do it.

Michigan Representative John Proos says it’s their constitutional duty to pass a budget by that date.

“It seems like we’re here every year, right down to the last moments; it happens in Indiana, too, so it’s not that unusual that it happens in Michigan,” Proos said. “We certainly have had our share of bad news in the last decade; nearly a million jobs lost, 500 thousand residents from Michigan have left our state–we know that has created some significant problems with Michigan’s budget.”

When it comes to the transfer of cash from the school aid fund to the general fund, Proos says it does not put education in jeopardy.

“The school aid fund is separate from our general fund and there’s about a $370 million surplus into there based upon projected revenues. So that’s good news– that means more people are spending money, with their sales tax revenues helping support our school aid fund. But our general fund revenues are down. That still means that Michigan’s economy is not rebounding the way that we want it to and we’re not seeing the successes of job growth that we would hope to see in our state where we would then see both of those funds do much better. We have to have a balanced budget and with now just a couple of weeks left, we would be facing layoffs and huge challenges to balance the current fiscal year budget.”

Proos said that the general fund will later repay the school fund that money. To hear more of his interview click on the video link above.