To The Point: Representatives Lilly, Lower, VanSingel

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — As we continue to introduce you to new lawmakers in Lansing, meet the new Representative from the 100th District’s Scott VanSingel who says finding workers is a key in the counties he represents.

“The main thing is we’re at almost 100 percent employment in our district and so there’s actually labor shortages when you look at the agriculture industry. So we need to look to the federal government to supply a steady force of workers and a lot of those are coming from out of the country. It would be nice if we could use local labor but it just hasn’t worked that way in the past really generation or more,” he said.

James Lower is the new representative in the 70th District and he too is focused on finding people to fill job openings.

“You know the last time we were on we talked a lot about skilled trades training and that issue and I was really excited that Speaker Leonard mentioned that as one of his top priorities. In talking with my colleagues that I’m coming in with it’s a top priority for a lot of freshmen and I think a lot of the people that are there. So I think if we can that issue addressed that would make a huge difference for my district,” Lower said.

Jim Lilly from Ottawa County’s 89th District says he wants to take a business approach to Lansing.

“You know my wife and I are very committed to Michigan. We really want to stay here for the rest of our lives and what we really saw was there’s a lot of people who run for office with a political background or a nonprofit background. But we just don’t have a lot of people running with a business background and we both thought that was very important. You know as a former banker and business leader I thought I had that skill set,” he said.

New lawmakers in Lansing is the focus of the Jan. 8, 2017 episode of “To The Point.”