LANSING, Michigan – Governor Snyder held his third State of the State speech last night. In it, he discussed the areas in which he would like to focus on during the next two years.
Transportation dollars to fix Michigan roads was towards the top of the list. He discussed his desire to look at the distribution formula for road funding, although no specific details were given. The Governor indicated that the state needs to pony up $1-$1.2 billion in additional road funding along with a local option piece to raise an additional couple million dollars. While we are looking forward to working on increased funding, the relevant data and the TF2 report indicate that $1.2-$1.4 is not enough to build the infrastructure Michigan needs in order to attract and retain talent. It was clear that Governor Snyder realized there will be an uphill battle with the political atmosphere of the legislature and that is why he urged the legislature during his speech last night to put politics aside and vote for increasing road funding. We look forward to working with the administration and the legislature on this very important topic in the months to come and encourage them to increase funding for transportation by more than the figures Governor Snyder laid out in his speech last night. There is a coalition called Just Fix the Roads by the Michigan Transportation Team that the League is a part of to urge the governor and legislature to provide funding to improve Michigan’s transportation infrastructure.
The governor also stated he wanted legislation that would help “strengthen communities.” On that list were ways of dealing with abandoned properties and slumlords, dealing with the issue of metal recycling, and public safety. He also wants to focus on ethics at both the state and local level in regards to conflict of interest rules and lobbying/campaign reporting.
Additional areas of focus from the speech were:
– Educational Achievement Authorities (EAA),
– Blue Cross Blue Shield reforms that did not get finished last session,
– auto insurance reforms,
– making it easier for veterans to get trained in mechanics, truck driver occupations and EMT,
– mental health
Here is a statement released by Michigan Municipal League President, David Lossing after the governor’s State of the State address.
Nikki Brown is a legislative associate for the League handling economic development and land use issues. She can be reached at [email protected] or 517-908-0305.