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January 26, 2006

Granholm Says Jobs Plan Will Continue to Set State’s Agenda

State of State Outlines Next Steps in Plan to Create Jobs, Protect Families

LANSING – In the fourth and final State of the State address of her first term, Governor Jennifer M. Granholm detailed Wednesday evening the next steps in her plan to diversify Michigan’s economy, create thousands of new jobs, and protect Michigan’s families.  The Governor talked of her hope for Michigan’s future and her concrete, aggressive agenda for turning that hope into good jobs and a stronger economy.     

“Michigan has the most far-reaching economic plan of any state in the country,” Granholm told a joint session of the Legislature.  “It’s an aggressive $6 billion plan to grow jobs today and jobs tomorrow.  And it’s about to get even more aggressive.”

Granholm highlighted a number of successes produced through her focus on growing the economy and her Jobs Today, Jobs Tomorrow plan which was first announced in last year’s State of the State address.  She pointed to the 327,000 jobs that have been created or retained by administration efforts, the $2 billion that will be invested in diversifying our economy, the 19,000 out-of-work citizens who have been matched with jobs through the MI Opportunity Partnership, and the nearly $3 billion in infrastructure projects that are being accelerated over the next three years as evidence that the plan is working.  Granholm noted that 99,000 more people are working today than when she took office, but noted that because people are still being impacted by the economic transition, there is still much work to do.

“We have been working the plan,” said Granholm.  “We have been consistent, disciplined, and unwavering in executing it.  And tonight, we will move this plan – and our state – forward.  We must protect the everyday way of life that Michigan citizens have worked so hard to build.”

Granholm outlined four specific steps her administration will take this year to continue the work begun by the Jobs Today, Jobs Tomorrow plan.  Specifically, the Governor called for:

•  investing in our 21st century economy by going anywhere and doing anything to create jobs and fighting to protect the jobs we have;

•  investing in the health of our citizens by dramatically increasing the number of people who have access to affordable insurance;

•  investing in education and the quality of our schools to ensure all of Michigan’s children have an opportunity for a quality education, access to higher education, and that Michigan has the best-educated workforce in the nation;

•  investing in the safety and security of our families by calling for an increase in the minimum wage, giving every worker an opportunity to save for retirement, protecting our seniors in nursing, demanding new standards of corporate accountability and ethics laws for elected officials.

To expand on the initial successes of the Jobs Today, Jobs Tomorrow plan, Granholm pledged to continue traveling across the country and around the globe.  The Governor outlined her plan to make Michigan a national leader in the development of alternative energies attracting these growing businesses to Michigan.  She also pledged to continue her efforts to force Washington leaders to partner with us to help the state’s struggling manufacturers by crafting a national health care plan, promoting fair trade policies, and reforming pension laws.  In addition, the Governor said she would continue to make Michigan friendly to business by continuing to reduce permitting time.

Governor Granholm also proposed a revolutionary new health care plan to provide access to affordable health insurance to more than 500,000 uninsured citizens.  The Michigan First Health Care Plan will make affordable private health plans available to small business employees, the self-employed, and the working poor without access to traditional employer-based health insurance or government-run programs.  The Governor noted that cutting the state’s uninsured population by half will create significant savings for businesses and citizens who subsidize uninsured health care.   

To give every child an opportunity for a quality education and access to higher education and to ensure that Michigan has the nation’s best-educated workforce, the Governor proposed a series of measures to strengthen our schools.  The Governor called for quick action on her proposal for a tough core curriculum and her new $4,000 Merit Award scholarship to ensure that every student has the tools they need to succeed and the opportunity to continue their education beyond high school.  The Governor indicated she would call for significant new investments in education, after school programs, and early childhood education in her upcoming budget.  In addition, the Governor called for measures to protect children from bullying, engage parents in the education process, and ensure that teachers receive training in maintaining discipline in the classroom.

Continuing her efforts to protect Michigan’s families, the Governor outlined a series of new measures to protect their financial and personal security.  The Governor called on the Legislature to allocate the additional $25 million she called for to help provide home heating assistance, to raise the minimum wage, to cut insurance rates by 20 percent, to pass tough new ethics standards and demand corporate responsibility, to provide workers access to pension savings plans, and to require criminal background checks for employees in nursing homes and elder care settings.

In closing, the Governor asked all Michigan residents to believe in our collective future.

“I invite you to join me in believing in that next chapter of Michigan’s history,” she said, “and then join me in writing it.”

 

May 13, 2005

Office of Community and Faith-Based Initiatives Web Site Launched

LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced community and faith-based groups across the state now have a one-stop shop for information on grants and programs they can use to maximize their role in protecting Michigan’s most vulnerable citizens.  The Web site, www.michigan.gov/outreach, was recently launched by the Governor’s Office of Community and Faith-Based Initiatives (OCFBI).      

The Web portal will provide 24-hour access to information regarding federal grants, state initiatives, and other partnership opportunities for faith-based organizations and community non-profits.  Groups can also sign up for the OCFBI listserv at the Web site, which will provide them with immediate updates when new opportunities become available.

The Office of Community and Faith-Based Initiatives focuses on supporting the critical community support services that faith-based and community organizations provide.  The Governor’s office has been engaged in community and faith-based outreach since 2003.  Creation of this new office under Executive Order 2005-6 formalizes the effort.

Functions of the OCFBI include advising the Governor on policies, priorities, and objectives for state government activities that will assist community and faith-based organizations address the social needs in Michigan; working closely with community and faith-based organizations to promote service activities and identify and apply for grants; and promoting and sharing innovative community and faith-based programs.

 

SOCIAL WORK LICENSING LEGISLATION ENACTED

Effective April 12, 2004, legislation was enacted which will change the regulation of social worker and certified social worker from registration to licensure.  The titles of social worker and certified social worker will remain in effect until July 1, 2005.  After July 1, 2005, a registered social worker will be called social worker or licensed bachelor's social worker; a certified social worker will be known as a licensed master's social worker.  Social work technician will be known as a social service technician and will continue to be issued a registration, not a license.

Question: I currently am a registered social worker or certified social worker.  What do I have to do to get my license?

Answer: Your registration will automatically be transferred to a license effective July 1, 2005, without any action by you.  A new document will be issued to you in July 2005 indicating that you are licensed at the appropriate level.  Your current permanent ID number will remain the same. 

You will not have to submit any additional paperwork or meet any new requirements as long as your registration is currently active.  If your registration has been expired more than three years, you will have to meet the current educational, experiential and testing requirements for registration or licensure.

Question: My social worker or certified social worker registration will expire in April 2005.  Will I be issued a license at that point?

Answer: You will be sent a document that says you are a registered social worker or certified social worker.  It will also indicate that July 1, 2005, your title changes to either licensed bachelor's social worker or licensed master's social worker.  Your permanent ID number will remain the same as your current ID number.

Question: Will there be an increase in the fee for renewal?

Answer: The legislation requires a change from the current two-year renewal cycle to a three-year renewal cycle.  After July 1, 2005, you will have to pay $75 to renew your license ($25 per year).  The license will then be effective for three years.  We may have to make some administrative adjustments to the number of people renewing each year which may result in some people getting a transitional license for less than three years but the fee would be adjusted to match the number of  years for which the license was valid.  Everyone will eventually be placed on the three-year renewal cycle.

Question: How does the new legislation impact me as a social work technician?

Answer:  The title of your registration changes from social work technician to social service technician. The renewal cycle will change from a two-year cycle to a three-year cycle.  You do not have to complete continuing education in order to renew your registration.

All currently active social work technicians will be issued a new registration document after July 1, 2005 with the new title of social service technician.

Question:  The new bill requires completion of continuing education.  When will I have to complete that requirement?

Answer:  Anyone licensed at either the bachelor's level (social worker) or the master's level (certified social worker) will be required to complete 45 clock hours of continuing education in the three-year renewal cycle.  For those issued a license for May 1, 2006-April 30, 2009, documentation of completion of continuing education courses acceptable to the board will be required when they renew in April 2009.

Question:  Can I get a list of what would be considered acceptable continuing education?

Answer:   The Board of Social Work will have to develop rules to delineate what courses or activities would be considered acceptable for continuing education.  The law does specify a total of forty five (45) clock hours, which would mean the equivalent of forty five (45) 60 minute blocks of time.

Question:  Is anyone who does social work type activities exempt from licensure?

Answer:  The following people are exempt from licensure:

  1. Individuals in a course of study leading to a degree in social work and participating in an internship or field placement supervised by a licensed master's social worker.
  2. Non-licensed or non-registered individuals who donates his or her services, other than psychotherapy services, to a charitable nonprofit organization as long as the individual does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work. 
  3. Ordained cleric or other religious practitioner if activities are incidental to his or her religious duties performed under the auspices of a church, denomination, religious association or sect that has tax-exempt status as long as the individual does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work.
  4. Certified, licensed or otherwise regulated member of any other profession authorized to practice by law as long as the individual does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work.
  5. Participant in self-help, peer counseling or support services program provided by either a charitable or labor organization exempt from taxation as long as the individual does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work.  This does not exempt employees of the organizations who are required to possess a license or registration to practice.
  6. Individual whose duties include some or all of the duties described as bachelor level social work if he or she is trained and does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work.
  7. A person who holds a bachelor's, master's or doctorate degree in social work from an accredited college or university can use a title including "social work" as long as the individual does not hold himself or herself out to the public as licensed or registered in the field of social work.

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