The Michigan House, led by Appropriations Chair Thomas Albert, today approved time-sensitive COVID relief measures for families and communities – with more assistance for schools expected to be approved later this week.
The measure approved today includes $1.45 billion for food assistance programs, $378 million for rental assistance, and resources helping communities with COVID and disaster relief. Albert expects the House will later this week approve about $4.4 billion in federal funding to help schools bounce back from the pandemic and help students catch up on lost learning.
“The people of Michigan faced some of the toughest COVID restrictions in the nation,” said Albert, of Lowell. “Many are still struggling. This is another significant step to get families, communities and students the help they need after an extremely difficult year-and-a-half.”
The House-approved measure also includes $21 million to pay off debt related to the Venture Michigan Fund, an economic development fund established in the early 2000s. Paying the money up front could save the state more than $100 million in future years.
Albert noted the COVID relief measures being approved this week are time-sensitive because of federal deadlines associated with distributing federal aid. The Legislature’s work continues on other COVID relief plans, proposals for infrastructure investment and the upcoming Fiscal Year 2021-22 budget.
House Appropriations Committee Chair Thomas Albert, of Lowell, today said a budget approved by the Michigan Legislature assists several Kent County communities and projects – including infrastructure upgrades, business parks and county fairs.
In a time where political power is divided within state government, we came together and accomplished a lot of good with this budget.
We helped ensure the budget is fiscally responsible and sustainable – paying back $150 million into the unemployment trust fund to restore money lost through fraudulent claims, restoring $500 million to the state’s rainy day fund, and keeping billions of dollars on the balance sheet as we move forward.