GOP Lawmakers React to Governor’s Budget Proposal
Several of Michigan’s GOP lawmakers are reacting to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s budget proposal, announced on Wednesday.
State Senator Jim Stamas from Midland serves as the Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman. He says, “This election-year budget proposal features a lot of areas of general agreement — such as fixing our roads and bridges, supporting our communities and small businesses, and ensuring students are able to effectively and safely learn in school — but we need more information on her plans. It is a start for more detailed discussions on how to best use our taxpayer dollars.” Stamas adds that the state should look beyond one-time federal resources. “As we consider how to use the billions of dollars in federal funds, we should consider whether it makes transformative changes that will benefit the Michigan people for generations to come and if the spending is sustainable after the federal dollars are gone.”
State Representative Ken Borton of Gaylord sits on the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation. He’s critical of the Governor’s plans. “Michigan drivers all want smooth streets, but Gov. Whitmer’s latest budget proposal doesn’t contain a real plan to fix our rough roads. We need to keep our roads in good shape for Michigan residents and travelers, but the governor wants to throw around federal and state taxpayer money without preparing for the future.” Borton adds, “When Gov. Whitmer took office, she said she would fix the roads. Instead of trying to make long-lasting, fiscally responsible change, she set out to add 45 cents to the price of every gallon of gas. Thankfully, she seems to have come around a little, and her new budget doesn’t try to resurrect her failed, misguided tax hike scheme.”
And State Senator Curt VanderWall from Ludington gave the proposal mixed reviews. “I was pleased to see that mental health spending, rural broadband support, and the health of our Great Lakes communities were included along with the many other priorities laid out in the governor’s budget proposal. Additionally, providing tax relief to families and seniors and investing in local infrastructure, our students and our workforce are also important.” VanderWall adds, “I am troubled, however, at her proposal’s reliance on using so much of the state’s one-time American Rescue Plan relief funds to inflate the size of government in unsustainable ways. These funds from the federal government should be responsibly used to combat the effects of COVID-19 and we have a real opportunity to make transformational changes for our state that will benefit Michiganders for generations to come.