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Target budget agreement includes additional money for Michigan roads, schools
May 20, 2015
Work on long-term solution for infrastructure to continue this summer
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder and legislative leaders agreed today on spending targets for the fiscal year 2016 budget that includes an additional $400 million in General Fund money to help repair Michigan roads and bridges while work continues on a long-term solution to the state’s infrastructure needs.
The agreement is an important step as lawmakers and Snyder continue work on the 2016 budget, which goes into effect on Oct. 1. The deal marks the fifth straight year that Michigan’s budget is on course for completion in June.
Getting the state budget done early helps schools, local governments, and others depending on state funding to have timely information to build their own spending plans.
“By increasing our investment in our infrastructure and education, we’re investing in Michigan’s future,” Snyder said. “This is essential work to keep our economy growing stronger and improving the quality of life for all Michiganders. I am pleased with how quickly the process has moved along and I think this is a testament to the strong working relationship we have with our legislative partners.”
With increased revenue from Michigan’s growing economy announced at last week’s estimating conference, leaders agreed to invest an additional $400 million in General Fund dollars to fix roads and bridges across the state.
Leaders plan to work toward a long-term funding solution for transportation throughout the summer. The final budget, expected to be signed in June, will increase investment in other key priorities such as education, public safety, health and human services, as well as saving for the future in the state’s rainy day fund.
Gov. Snyder, Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof, and House Speaker Kevin Cotter acknowledged that while there is still work to do before the budget is signed, setting spending targets today is a significant accomplishment in moving the process forward. Residents should feel very good about these investments that will continue to grow Michigan even stronger.
“The Senate has carefully reviewed state spending and redirected resources to put more money into roads, increase education funding, prioritize public safety and serve the needs of our most vulnerable populations. As a result, some areas of the budget will see increases, while others will experience a reduction in funding,” Sen. Meekhof said. “Michigan families work hard. As elected officials, it is our responsibility to spend their tax dollars wisely to fund their priorities and meet their expectations. Michigan’s economic growth benefits us all and responsible budgeting is an essential part of keeping that growth on track.”
“This budget is responsible, results-driven and balanced for the longterm,” said Rep. Cotter. “We kept spending low to protect the taxpayers but also made strong investments in the right priorities to keep our state moving forward. Today’s agreement is another important step in continuing Michigan’s economic recovery, and I look forward to finalizing the details and completing the budget process very soon.”
The economic news announced at the revenue estimating conference last week remains very positive for the continued future growth of Michigan’s economy. The rebounding economy coupled with job growth and a lowering unemployment rate makes this a very exciting time to be a Michigander.
Now that target agreements have been reached, legislative leaders will begin the work of finalizing the budget through conference committees.