State Rep. Jim Lilly, of Park Township, today testified on his plan to provide support for families facing devastating damage to their homes, businesses, streets, and other public infrastructure caused by high water levels.
Lilly’s measure, if passed, will help prevent future damage by allowing local governments to issue temporary emergency rulings to slow down water activities near affected areas. This would include boats, jet skis or similar vessels. The plan is necessary because, under current law, it can take several months or even years to obtain necessary permitting.
“My plan will not stop Michiganders from enjoying our lakes,” Lilly said after testifying in front of the House Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Committee. “I am an advocate for our state’s natural resources and a boater myself, and I encourage people to enjoy our outdoors to the fullest. But these high water levels are causing significant damage and if we don’t act soon, the problem is only going to get worse. My plan will help preserve our natural resources and communities, and protect families from future damage.”
Rep. Lilly has remained committed to helping families affected by water levels from day one and said he will continue fighting for the people of Ottawa County and Michigan.
At the end of last year, Lilly and several bipartisan lawmakers sent a letter to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer urging her to declare a state of emergency along the entire Lake Michigan shoreline.
He has also introduced and supported other measures to address this ongoing problem, including a resolution calling on Canada to stop redirecting water into the Great Lakes.
HB 5463 remains in the House Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Committee for further review, and Lilly hopes to see a committee vote next week.
PHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Jim Lilly testifies today before the House Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Committee on his plan to provide support to communities facing water damage caused by record high water levels.