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Sen. Huizenga supports state budget focused on positive investments and good government

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Mark Huizenga on Friday voted to finalize a fiscal year 2023 state budget that increases funding for K-12 schools, reduces debt, and saves resources to provide tax relief for everyone in Michigan.

“This landmark budget focuses on promoting good government by reducing our debts, investing in a more stable and stronger economy, and keeping our communities safe. And it achieves all those goals while living within our means and reserving funds for future tax relief,” said Huizenga, R-Walker. “Ensuring our kids receive a quality education that prepares them for success is critical to our state’s future, and this budget includes a $2.6 billion increase in K-12 school funding. We are also providing key investments in economic and career development to grow our economy and connect workers with good jobs.”

House Bill 5783 is the general omnibus budget and includes:

  • $2 million for the United Methodist Community House to expand affordable housing and open up child care options.
  • $6.5 million to help cover transition costs for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans moving into a new facility.
  • $38 million for a new mental health pediatric facility in Cutlerville.
  • $20.1 million to help PACE Initiatives, which helps the elderly live independently at home, cover increased health care costs during the pandemic and to increase capacity.
  • $2.5 million for the Graduation Alliance to help high school dropouts earn their diploma.
  • $201,100 for building security cost increases at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.
  • Funding for a Kent County foster care pilot project with the West Michigan Partnership for Children.
  • $525,000 for Kids’ Food Basket to address a waitlist of children who need sack suppers.
  • $10 million for the Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital and Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital joint venture.
  • $5 million for Network180 to serve individuals and families in Kent County seeking help for mental illness, substance use, or intellectual and developmental disabilities.

“This budget also invests $30 million toward a proposed 12,000-seat amphitheater along the riverfront in downtown Grand Rapids, $11 million to expand the Grand Rapids Public Museum’s visitor capacity, and $12 million to support Special Olympics Michigan.” Huizenga said. “I proudly worked with local leaders to secure this funding to help improve family fun and learning options along the Grand River and support an outstanding organization helping people with disabilities.”

HB 5783 also includes $2.3 billion to help fix local roads and bridges, $1.7 billion to fix state highway roads and bridges, $750 million to help local governments meet their pension obligations and free up more funds for critical local services, $325 million for a new state psychiatric hospital complex, $110 million for the Going Pro and Michigan Reconnect training programs, $40 million for the Pure Michigan tourism campaign, and funding to train and hire 170 state police troopers and train 800 corrections officers.

Senate Bill 845 is an education omnibus budget that features a nearly $2.6 billion increase in K-12 school funding to $19.6 billion and uses $630.5 million to increase the minimum foundation allowance by another $450 to $9,150 per student. It also provides $295 million to address student mental health, $305 million in scholarship funding to help address teacher shortages, $168 million in school safety grants, and nearly $1.5 billion for the school employee’s retirement system to put more resources in the classroom.

SB 845 includes a 5% increase for university and community college operations, $300 million to pay down debt in the higher education retirement system, and $250 million in a fund for a new student scholarship program, details for which will be negotiated this summer.

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