CHIEF PETTY OFFICER JASON FREIWALD

MEMORIAL HIGHWAY

House Bill 4061 (H-1) as referred to second committee

Sponsor:  Rep. Jeff Yaroch

1st Committee:  Transportation

2nd Committee:  Ways and Means

Complete to 2-25-19

SUMMARY:

House Bill 4061 would amend the Michigan Memorial Highway Act to designate the portion of highway M-53 in Macomb County between 31 Mile Road and 32 Mile Road as the “Chief Petty Officer Jason Freiwald Memorial Highway.”

Proposed MCL 250.1021b

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

Chief Petty Officer Jason Freiwald was born on December 20, 1977 in Utica, Michigan. After graduating from Armada Senior High School, he enlisted in the Navy on April 25, 1996, reporting for basic training in November of that year. He completed basic training and later graduated from the Navy and Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center Dam Neck, Virginia. He then reported for Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training at Coronado, California, and, after graduating, completed airborne school in Fort Benning, Georgia.

His first permanent duty station was SEAL Team 5, Naval Amphibious Base Coronado, where he served for two years before transferring to SEAL Team 3. Jason completed numerous qualifications to prepare for combat, including sniper training, Arabic, and tactical rock climbing. In 2005, he transferred from SEAL Team 3 and began training with the Naval Special Warfare Development Group (NSWDG). After completing the training, he received orders for Naval Special Warfare Tactical Development and Evaluation Squadron 2.

According to committee testimony, on September 11, 2008, Chief Petty Officer Jason Freiwald was in Afghanistan on a top-secret night mission. He was the lead breach on the team. Upon entering the compound and engaging in a battle with heavily armed militants, Jason sustained fatal injuries and died from those injuries on September 12, 2008. He was 30 years old.

Designating a portion of M-53 between 31 Mile Road and 32 Mile Road in Macomb County as the “Chief Petty Officer Jason Freiwald Memorial Highway” would be an appropriate way to honor his life, his service, and his sacrifice for our country.

FISCAL IMPACT:

Section 2 of the Michigan Memorial Highway Act indicates that the state transportation department shall provide for the erection of suitable markers indicating the name of the highway only “when sufficient private contributions are received to completely cover the cost of erecting and maintaining those markers.” As a result, the bill has no state or local fiscal impact.

POSITIONS:

The Michigan Department of Transportation indicated a neutral position regarding the bill. (2-19-19)

                                                                                        Legislative Analyst:   E. Best

                                                                                                Fiscal Analyst:   William E. Hamilton

This analysis was prepared by nonpartisan House Fiscal Agency staff for use by House members in their deliberations, and does not constitute an official statement of legislative intent.