House Republican Leader Matt Hall, R-Richland Township, on Wednesday voted against Democrats’ wasteful budget that creates unsustainable programs and funds pork projects yet neglects roads, school safety, and other essential priorities of the people of Michigan.
The $81.7 billion spending plan wildly expands state government with more than 1,000 new bureaucrats. Hall warned that the growth of government will undoubtedly lead to higher taxes to keep paying for the new programs in future years.
“The Democrats’ pork-barrel budget wastes the people’s dollars and tees up future tax hikes to pay for irresponsible, unsustainable programs,” Hall said. “Their spending is a mile wide and an inch deep — funding all sorts of half-baked programs without giving enough support to actually deliver the solutions the people of Michigan deserve. This ridiculous plan fails to fix our local roads, bridges, and water infrastructure. It leaves our police departments without help to hire new officers. And it even removes the dedicated funding set aside exclusively for school safety officers.
“Michigan’s budget should support Michiganders — not jumpstart bad programs. Instead of opening the door for tax hikes, let’s find ways to reduce burdens on Michigan taxpayers and make life more affordable.”
The Democrat budget fails to invest additional resources statewide to fix local roads and other infrastructure, funding only a few select projects. Last month, Hall proposed $1 billion for local road repairs, but Democrats refused to include the key funding in the budget. The budget invests a mere $80 million in some bridges, far short of the $1.5 billion needed to fix critical bridges in the state. The plan also fails to invest sufficient resources in water infrastructure.
The spending plan neglects safety needs of Michigan communities and schools. Democrats rejected Hall’s proposal for $100 million to help short-staffed local police departments recruit and retain officers. Instead of hiring officers, the legislation funds unarmed social workers as part of their scheme to undercut the police. The budget also removed dedicated funding for school resource officers, who build relationships with students as they protect Michigan schools.
Further, the Democrat budget:
- Creates new, unsustainable programs, such as funding a population commission to propose tax increases, a sentencing commission to propose lower sentences for criminals, and diversity officers.
- Spends well over $1 billion dollars on pork-barrel projects.
- Creates more than $30 million in grant programs to unions.
- Doubles down on the elimination of work search requirements for Healthy Michigan.
- Opens the door for a business-crippling cap-and-trade program with carbon credits.
- Increases burdensome groundwater fees on Michigan small businesses to pay for more bureaucrats to investigate those local businesses.
House Bill 4437 and Senate Bill 173 now advance to the governor.
“DTE’s $368 million electric rate increase on Michigan residents and job providers is nothing compared to what’s coming down the pipeline next. The utilities will collect a windfall under Democrats’ energy mandates that became law this week.”
“The population council’s current proposal isn’t even a real plan and has no strategy to grow our population,” Hall said. “It’s just a long wish list for new revenues — tax hikes on Michiganders.”
“Michiganders want their leaders to work together to make our state safe and successful,” Hall said. “The balance of power in the House of Representatives is a call to bipartisanship, and Michigan legislators on both sides of the aisle should answer the call and find common ground.”