Fixing Our Roads -- Governor Snyder Speaks Out

By Reinvention Blog | March 21, 2014

As Spring begins in Michigan and potholes appear across our state, the condition of our roads is a big topic on people's minds.

During a recent event in Grand Rapids, Governor Snyder was asked about roads and what can be done to help solve the problem. Unfortunately, the answer isn't as easy as patching potholes. In fact, Michigan needs to invest an additional one to $1.2 billion per year on roads and infrastructure.

"If we don't make that investment, we're just racking up huge bills that we're gonna stick our kids with or we're going to have to pay later," Governor Snyder said.

"The most easy analogy I can give you is, do you change the oil in your car? The answer is yes. Do you like paying the bill for your oil change? No. But you pay that bill because it's a lot cheaper than an engine rebuild. Well that's the way we've been operating in Michigan. We haven't been doing our oil changes. So let's do those."

It's a message Governor Snyder first delivered in his Special Message on Infrastructure in October 2011. At that time, Governor Snyder noted:

"The challenge is simple. Michigan's infrastructure is deteriorating from a lack of investment. If we are going to reinvent Michigan's economy, we have to reinvest in Michigan's infrastructure."

"For the first time ever transportation revenues are declining. Simply put, better fuel economy and higher gas prices lead to lower road revenues from the fixed fuel tax. All the while, the cost of materials and labor continue to rise, seriously undermining our ability to keep up."

Last year, Governor Snyder offered a plan in his FY2014 budget that would increase funding for roads by $1.2 billion, and he renewed that call in this year's budget, including a one-time expenditure of a quarter billion dollars for road repairs.

Governor Snyder has asked Michiganders to contact their legislator and urge them to take action.

"So call your legislator, and call 'em, and call 'em again," Governor Snyder said.