Author

Julia Forrest

Julia Forrest

Julia Forrest is a contributor to the Michigan Advance. She has been covering Michigan and national politics for two years at the Michigan Daily and OpenSecrets. She studies public policy at the University of Michigan.

Kids often struggle with money matters. A new bill in Congress aims to change that.

By: - October 4, 2021

U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.) alongside U.S. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.) introduced a bill last week that would boost financial literacy in high school students by establishing a pilot program where students will be given an initial deposit and subsequent opportunities to have a set amount of their continued savings matched.  The bipartisan bill, the […]

Dem wants prisoner ‘good time’ credits brought back, reversing ‘tough-on-crime’ measures

By: - October 3, 2021

Michigan Sen. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor) introduced legislation last week that would reinstate “good time credits” in the Michigan prison system.  “Good time” credits are a system that enables inmates to earn credits based on following the rules and academic and professional program participation and gain with the intent for prisoners to be able to […]

Bills introduced for family leave, time off for miscarriage  

By: - September 29, 2021

Members of the Michigan Progressive Women’s Caucus introduced a package of bills in both the Michigan Senate and House on Wednesday looking to help Michigan women rejoin the workforce after a disproportionate number of women left their jobs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The legislation comes as the COVID-19 pandemic lowered workforce participation […]

Dingell blasts Greene for crashing press conference, says ‘try being a Christian’

By: - September 27, 2021

U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) lambasted fellow Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (R-Ga.) on Friday after Greene harassed Democrats as they assembled on the Capitol steps for a news conference on the 218-211 passage of their bill codifying the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling legalizing abortion. Democrats approved the bill after the Supreme Court allowed […]

Former Michigan House speaker wants rematch against AG Nessel in ‘22

By: - September 26, 2021

Former Michigan House Speaker Tom Leonard (R-DeWitt) announced at the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference that he will again run against Democratic now-Attorney General Dana Nessel in 2022 after a failed attempt in 2018.  Leonard joined the Republican candidate field of Trump-backed Kalamazoo attorney Matthew DePerno, who has worked on pro-Trump attempts to overturn the 2020 […]

LGBTQ+ advocates worry about fate of same-sex marriage as SCOTUS weighs overturning Roe v. Wade

By: - September 24, 2021

As the U.S. Supreme Court plans to hear in December a challenge to Mississippi’s abortion ban that could overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision — some LGBTQ+ advocates are concerned that threats to same-sex marriage are on the horizon. The Supreme Court only ruled six years ago to legalize same-sex marriage in Obergefell […]

Last of FY ‘22 budget heads to Whitmer’s desk, vaccine, masks measures likely unenforceable

By: and - September 22, 2021

With just over a week before the start of Fiscal Year (FY) 2022, both chambers of the Legislature finished on Wednesday passing remaining spending plans worth about $53 billion. They now head to the desk of Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has said she’ll sign them. The legislative Conference Committees laid out the details of […]

Bipartisan bills boost crisis response and jail diversion programs for people with mental illness

By: - September 20, 2021

State Sens. Rick Outman (R-Six Lakes) and Sen. Stephanie Chang (D-Detroit) introduced two bills last week to establish grants funding community crisis and jail intervention programs in localities to address pitfalls in mental health response programs in Michigan.  In 1974, the Community Mental Health code was established in Michigan that created laws and programs to […]

Rep. Jones stripped of committee assignments after 3rd bond violation

By: - September 16, 2021

Michigan House Speaker Jason Wentworth (R-Clare) stripped Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster) of all committee assignments Thursday.  That followed Jones attempting to sneak a handcuff key into jail on Tuesday after a judge sent him to jail for committing his third bond violation after initially being arrested for drunk driving and resisting arrest.  Jones was arrested […]

Lawmakers introduce bills to reform school disciplinary process

By: - September 16, 2021

State Sens. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor), Erika Geiss (D-Taylor) and Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) introduced a package of bills this week to transform Michigan’s disciplinary systems in schools and further mitigate the effects of the long-running zero-tolerance policy that was abolished in 2016.  Zero-tolerance policies meant students were required to face penalties such as expulsion or […]

Dem introduces bill decriminalizing psychedelics, hopes to reverse some ‘War on Drugs’ impacts

By: - September 13, 2021

Michigan Sen. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor) introduced legislation last week that would decriminalize the use of psilocybin and mescaline — two plants and fungi commonly found in psychedelics.  Senate Bill 631, which was co-sponsored by state Sen. Adam Hollier (D-Detroit), would allow the possession, cultivation and delivery of the two types of psychedelics. Commercial production […]

Unemployment head tells House panel she ‘absolutely’ takes responsibility for agency failures

By: - September 9, 2021

Liza Estlund Olson, the acting director of Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA), testified before a state House panel Thursday on unemployment system problems since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Olson’s appearance before the Oversight Committee comes after Republican lawmakers have leveled withering criticism at the Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer administration over its handling of […]