Senate passes FY 2022 budget plan

LANSING, Mich. — Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Jim Stamas this week led Senate passage of a budget plan that meets the pressing issues facing Michigan and its people, continues to provide critical services and makes key investments to improve the state.

“A budget — whether for a household, a small business or all of state government — is a statement of priorities. Like any family or business, elected officials must decide how to best use our limited resources,” said Stamas, R-Midland. “It’s our responsibility to remember the reality being faced at family kitchen tables and in small businesses throughout Michigan as we make our spending decisions. This budget plan focuses on wisely investing our hardworking taxpayer dollars to benefit everyone in our state while living within our means.

“It is the next step in laying the groundwork for productive negotiations with the House and governor on enacting a budget by July that supports healthy families and communities, builds a healthier economy, and puts our state on a path for a healthy future.”

Senate Bill 83 would invest $15.8 billion in K-12 education, a total increase of $249 million. The bill dedicates an additional $20 million to assist students dealing with mental health challenges and boosts preschool funding by $32 million to help reduce class sizes. It also dedicates $1.7 billion to help cover the costs of school employee retirement.

“To help create a healthier future in Michigan, we continue to focus on investing in our children’s education. Our plan continues a record level of support for Michigan schools and increases the minimum foundation allowance by $250 to $8,361 per pupil,” Stamas said.

The Senate budget plan also includes $72 million for competitive and need-based scholarships for higher education students, $40 million in the Going Pro program to provide grants to support employee training, $30 million for the Michigan Reconnect program to provide tuition-free community college and training, $77 million to provide child care for more families, and $161 million for wage increases for direct care workers and front-line workers at child care institutions.

The bills prioritize more revenue sharing funding for local governments, more resources for state road and bridge construction, $2.2 billion for local transportation infrastructure projects, a 60% increase to the Pure Michigan campaign, a 50% boost for grants to help struggling veterans with expenses, and a new program to incentivize locals to reduce their long-term debts.

SBs 77 and 79-94 now head to the House of Representatives for consideration

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Editor’s note: The above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting www.SenatorJimStamas.com/Photowire.

Photo caption: Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Jim Stamas, R-Midland, outlines a Senate budget plan for fiscal year 2022 during session on Tuesday. The Senate plan focuses on maintaining record funding for schools, meeting the pressing issues facing Michigan and its people, continuing to provide critical services and making key investments to improve the state.