Hearing From You
Strengthening Rural Health Care
I am grateful for the incredible work of our community’s health care professionals throughout this pandemic. To thank some of these men and women in person, I had the opportunity to visit the Eaton Rapids Medical Center and Hillsdale Hospital and hear from members of their teams. I appreciated discussing the importance of rural health care and the positive impact they received from the CARES Act and Paycheck Protection Program.
Supporting Small Businesses
During these challenging times, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has been a lifeline for small businesses across the 7th District. For example, this program has helped family-owned places like Doug’s Auto Recyclers in Coldwater and local restaurants like Smokehouse 52 in Saline and Chelsea keep their workers on payroll. In Temperance, a PPP loan also helped support Forest View Lanes and the 70 people it employs. Sadly, despite taking additional safety precautions, this small business is on the verge of closing its doors for good because Governor Whitmer still won’t let them safely re-open.
Safely Returning to School
As institutions of higher education welcome students back to campus, I recently met with Adrian College and Monroe County Community College to discuss the steps they are taking to provide a safe learning environment. I also had the chance to speak with superintendents from across the district about the challenges facing K-12 schools as we combat the virus together.
Expanding Rural Broadband
Access to high-speed broadband is critical for the small business, educational, health care, and other daily needs of our communities. This week, I met with Foundation for Saline Area Schools and Rural Reach to hear about their work to extend broadband to students in Washtenaw County. When it comes to reliable internet connectivity, I am working to make sure that our rural areas are not left behind.
Combating the Opioid Crisis
Tragically, during this pandemic we’ve seen a spike in overdoses and far too many of our loved ones continue to struggle with addiction. I had the opportunity to see the progress being made on construction of Andy’s Place Apartments, which will provide long-term opioid rehabilitation housing in the Jackson area. I was also pleased to announce a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to support efforts in Lenawee County to combat the opioid crisis.