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LaFave: Governor’s 147 line-item vetoes are ‘like watching a bad slasher film’
RELEASE|October 1, 2019
Contact: Beau LaFave

State Rep. Beau LaFave issued the following statement in response to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s decision to line-item veto key programs and priorities in the Legislature’s budget plan:

“I feel like I’m watching a bad slasher film. Here’s the plot: The governor gets a budget that doesn’t include her $2.5 billion gas tax hike and, on the eve of the first of October, she goes to town, slashing $375 million in additional funding for road repairs and axing $218 million in funds and programs for Michigan’s K-12 students.

“The governor can go on a rampage and veto as many items as she wants, but it won’t get her a 45-cent per gallon gas tax increase.

“Here are 34 of the most important items to citizens of the Upper Peninsula slashed from the budget by Gov. Whitmer:

  1. $2,500 for a feasibility study to bring a veterans’ cemetery to the Upper Peninsula
  2. $4 million to help county veteran service officers connect with veterans in need
  3. $250,00 for a veteran benefit eligibility study to help streamline veterans’ application for VA benefits
  4. $250,000 for a buddy-to-buddy program that connects veterans struggling with PTSD to a veteran “buddy”
  5. $50,000 for updated uniforms for our National Guard
  6. $1 million for the Soo Locks
  7. $2 million for sheriffs to hire personnel to patrol secondary roads
  8. $200,000 for conservation district improvements
  9. $20,000 to support the civil air patrol when they assist the state in fire surveillance, missing persons searches, etc.
  10. $10 million for the rural jobs and capital investment fund
  11. $200,000 designated to study PFAS in game and wildlife
  12. $100,000 set aside for deer habitat improvement
  13. $100,000 in behavioral health counseling services for children
  14. $500,000 for mental and physical health programs at senior centers
  15. $10.7 million in psychiatric services at critical access hospitals
  16. $1.5 million to help detect traumatic brain injuries in children
  17. $175,000 in legal services to help individuals getting social security disability
  18. $175,000 to support low-income refugee families’ transition to self-sufficiency
  19. $300,000 to provide emergency shelter to homeless and runaway youth
  20. $600,000 for high-school students struggling with opioid abuse
  21. $34.2 million to provide services for Medicaid patients at critical access hospitals
  22. $1 million in assistance for human trafficking survivors
  23. $3.89 million for private duty nurses who attend to child Medicaid patients
  24. $15 million for improvements to the state Capitol’s infrastructure
  25. $4.6 million for replacing electronic tethers for parolees
  26. $3.3 million in payments to private landowners in the Commercial Forest Program
  27. $18.6 million in payments in lieu of taxes to local governments for property owned by the DNR
  28. $16 million in grants for CTE equipment
  29. $7 million to assist rural school districts with higher transportation costs
  30. $700,000 adoption support services
  31. $2 million for foster care payments
  32. $1 million for child advocacy centers
  33. $3,750,000 in grants to support at-risk youth
  34. $2 million for the state’s first responder communications network

Her slash-and-tax agenda just won’t fly. The governor keeps saying that this budget nightmare is about fixing the roads and not justifying a massive tax increase, but no one is buying tickets to see that show.

“Michigan is getting tired of the Whiplash Whitmer budget horror show – it’s time quit the political theater and go back to governing.

 

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