Rep. Bronna Kahle of Adrian today voted in favor of a new taxpayer-friendly state budget investing more in road repairs and mental health programs while doing more to protect drinking water.
The votes helped the Legislature complete its work on a new state budget for the fiscal year starting Oct. 1. Last week, Kahle and the Legislature approved record-high investment in Michigan students as part of the same overall budget – all done without tax increases.
“Our state budget should reflect the values of our friends, families and neighbors right here in Lenawee County and across our state,” Kahle said. “This budget delivers on those shared priorities.
“When a family has a loved one facing a mental health crisis, there will be a place to turn. When a senior is battling Alzheimer’s, there will be more support. More money will be directed to fix our roads and repair crumbling bridges without raising taxes. This is a good and honest budget, and I strongly encourage Gov. Whitmer to do the right thing for Michigan families and sign it once it gets to her desk.”
Whitmer declined to participate in budget negotiations after her demands for a 45-cent per gallon gas tax increase were rejected.
The Legislature’s budget places a priority on:
- Public health. Another $120 million is dedicated to protect drinking water against PFAS, lead and other contaminants. Funding to prevent opioid abuse and provide substance abuse treatment increases by more than $30 million. A statewide mental health hotline is supported by a $2 million commitment. Kahle secured funding for Lenawee County to participate in a pilot program to help deliver care for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. The program – including a total of $400,000 over 10 counties — will include a 24/7 helpline, care consultation and referral to support groups for patients and their families. The budget also improves funding for rural hospitals, including ones such as ProMedica Herrick Hospital in Tecumseh.
- Public safety. Eighty-six new Michigan State Police troopers will be trained. Statutory revenue sharing increases by 2.3 percent to help local governments maintain essential public services including police and fire departments.
- Economic growth. Investments continue and increase in programs such as Going Pro to train more workers for good-paying, high demand careers so they can support themselves and their families – continuing Michigan’s economic comeback. This builds upon the previously approved schools budget providing significant increases in career and technical education.
- Roads. Another $400 million is invested in road and bridge repairs, continuing the Legislature’s commitment to improving roads without tax increases or cuts to essential services. Michigan’s Department of Transportation budget will top $5 billion and provide more money for road repairs than ever before.
The schools budget approved last week includes a record $15.2 billion for Michigan students, increasing the foundation allowance by more than $300 million — up to $240 more per student. Additional support is provided for special education, early literacy, school safety and several other programs.