State Rep. Ann Bollin talks with Livingston County Sheriff Mike Murphy and Rep. Bob Bezotte following a press conference in May announcing plans for additional funding for law enforcement recruitment and retention.
State Rep. Ann Bollin of Brighton Township today expressed support for a comprehensive $250 million plan to support local public safety personnel and help them better protect the communities they serve.
The $250 million supplemental budget plan – focused on recruitment and retention, community outreach and equipment upgrades – was unveiled today during a House Appropriations Committee hearing. It builds upon an $80 million preliminary plan Bollin helped the House approve in May.
“The men and women in uniform who dedicate their lives to keeping our neighborhoods safe deserve our support,” Bollin said. “This plan will help local police departments fill their ranks with good police officers, offer training opportunities and support services, and improve the overall safety of our communities.”
Bollin said the plan demonstrates a commitment to public safety at a time Michigan has nearly 4,000 fewer law enforcement officers than during the 2001 terrorist attacks. There are hundreds of unfilled positions across the state.
The initiative includes $57.5 million for a “Move to Michigan” recruitment plan to help local departments hire officers now working in other states.
Other pillars of the House Republican plan include:
Improving recruitment and retention: Tuition assistance and grants to help offset expenses will make attending an academy a more practical, affordable option for local law enforcement and corrections officer candidates. Local departments could receive grants to offer job shadowing and signing bonuses to new hires. Local law enforcement, fire departments, EMS agencies and corrections departments would get recruitment marketing support. Public safety personnel who miss work because of forced COVID-19 quarantine could be reimbursed for lost wages and leave time. An additional $7.5 million would support mental health assistance for local law enforcement, firefighters, EMS personnel and other public safety officers.
Strengthening community bonds: A total of $10 million in grants would be provided for community policing initiatives shown to improve relationships between officers and people in the neighborhoods they serve. The mix of community policing and mentorship that make the Police Athletic League so successful in Detroit would be expanded to other communities with a $15 million investment.
Supplying essential equipment: More resources would be available for body-worn cameras and gear, communications equipment upgrades, and other essentials.
Other provisions include support for local police K-9 units, school resource officers and additional training.
House Bill 5522 remains under consideration in the Appropriations Committee.
The Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) on Wednesday disclosed it paid out an estimated $8.5 billion to fraudulent claims. This is in addition to the nearly $4 billion in ineligible payments discovered by the Auditor General in a November 2021 performance audit. State Rep. Ann Bollin issued the following statement: