Michigan Lockdown and UP Impact, Legislative Issue Suggestions, Generational Changes in Local Government, 109th Seat, and Moose Car Licking

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Michigan Lockdown and UP Impact

Hearing from Whisperers throughout the region about the concern for neighbors and friends who work for restaurants, bars and other small businesses who are so greatly impacted by being unemployed or having their hours/pay reduced.

Folks are asking if their friends and family who own small businesses will survive these COVID shutdowns. The economic impact of COVID in our region is impacting so many in our communities.

Food banks throughout the UP are seeing more and more demand, and so are requests for economic assistance. 

Of course, everyone is praying for those struggling with COVID or who have family members who are fighting the pandemic. All this while we all wait to hear when a vaccine will be available in the Upper Peninsula and throughout Michigan. 

Legislative Issues for 2020/21 Suggestions

We recently asked our Whisperers for suggestions about what issues they would like our policy makers in Lansing and Washington D.C. to address in the remainder of 2020 and into 2021. 

Here are some of the responses from our Whispers readers:

  • Economic assistance for those needing it during this COVID pandemic.
  • Protection and assistance for small businesses and their employees impacted by the pandemic.
  • Tax reform to help middle class families and economically challenged families. Reduce the burden on these families. More tax fairness. 
  • Broadband availability expansion in rural areas to assist students attending their schools via online/virtual programs. Continued expansion of the successful NMU EAN program.
  • Broadband/internet services for businesses and individuals to build, expand and operate businesses in rural areas. 
  • More equity in school funding throughout the state. Address the funding issues in the UP that are due to distances between schools and families, energy costs, distance learning costs and other related issues. Narrow the gap between rich and poor school districts.

More to come in later editions.

Generational Changes in Elected UP Local Government

In the UP and across the nation there seems to be the beginnings of a generational change in public policy leaders in elected and appointed positions.

One example of this is the City of Marquette. Recent elections have brought changes in the composition of the city commission. Five of the seven members are under the age of 40. The Mayor of Marquette is part of that new younger generation of leaders on their city commission.

Often, new and younger members of local government bring new and younger candidates to state legislative and congressional races. We shall see how it impacts races in the UP in coming years. Let us know if you are seeing generational shifts in local government leadership in your community. 

Who Will Run for House 109th District in 2022

Incumbent Sara Cambensy begins her third term in January 2021. That means she is term limited in at the end of 2022. Most observers credit her with a very successful career in the Michigan House of Representatives and are watching what she will do next after this upcoming term ends.

Jockeying has already started to succeed her. Republicans and Democrats are beginning to explore options. Both parties are watching the successes across the nation and in Michigan that female candidates had in the November election and are looking for more female candidates all across America and Michigan.

Representative Cambensy is the second woman to serve from the Upper Peninsula in the Michigan House. Whisperers around the UP are talking about many different potential female candidates for the 109th District.

Some say 2022 might not be the year for white male candidates in the 109th, but who knows for sure. The 2022 election is a long way away right now. More to come from Whispers about this in coming months. 

Canada’s Prohibition on Moose Car Licking–A Smile for the Week

We wondered when we read this if this moose licking thing was an issue in the UP. The New York Times ran this picture and copy that said “Do not let the moose lick the car.”

This warning appeared in a digital sign in Alberta’s Jasper National Park. Evidently letting the moose lick your car and the salt on the car makes the moose too comfortable around humans and cars. Anyone seen this in the UP? Smile. Smile. Life is Good!!!

Quotes (That make you Go Hmm)

“There are two kinds of forecasters. Those who don’t know and those who don’t know they don’t know.” John Galbraith.

“Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from

 extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom and then lose it have never known it again.” Ronald Reagan. 

“Jeering moral condescension from entitled elites is among the things most people tend to resent. Bret Stephens. 

Book Recommendations

Do you have one to suggest to us and our readers? Please send us the title, author name and publication date. Send them to david@ruralinsights.org. None of the book suggestions we publish are endorsements of the book or the author, just suggestions for you to consider.

Book recommendations from Rural Insight readers: 

Battlegrounds. H.R. McMasters. 2020.

The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III. 2020.

A Promised Land. Barack Obama. 2020.

bold fix

David Haynes

Professor David Haynes is a Professor of Public Administration and teaches in the MPA graduate program at Northern Michigan University, where he previously served as President. David has been involved in the public administration and political science field for over 45 years.

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