LaSata: Legislature approves state’s new budget 

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Legislature on Wednesday finalized a fiscal year 202budget that is balanced, on time, and invests in Southwest Michigan priorities, including educationjob training and infrastructure. 

These are unprecedented times, and the response to the coronavirus meant the state was facing a serious budget deficit,” said Sen. Kim LaSata, R-Bainbridge Township. “But just as families in Southwest Michigan must balance their budgets in the face of adversity, I am pleased the Legislature was able to work together in a bipartisan way to overcome our challenges and pass a budget that funds our shared priorities without raising taxes.”    

Senate Bill 927 is an education omnibus budget featuring a $65 per student increase in state aid payments for all schools in addition to restoring the $175 per pupil reduction made to balance the FY 2020 budget. It also includes an additional $37 million for student mental health support and $3 million more for early childhood literacy. 

House Bill 5396 is a general omnibus budget that includes $20 million to ensure nursing homes have adequate personal protective equipment to protect staff and residents, $7 million to graduate at least 50 new state troopers and maintain trooper strength, $26 million for the Going Pro program to help train employees, and an additional $14 million to extend broadband service into underserved areas. 

It also invests $15 million in the Pure Michigan tourism campaign, deposits $35 million in the state’s rainy day fund, and fully funds the 2015 plan to help fix the state’s roads. 

“This has been a challenging year for families,” said LaSata. “I am pleased to support this budget, which makes key investments in our children’s education, training for workers to get back on the job, protections for our most vulnerable seniors from the coronavirus, and connectivity underserved communities need for the 21st Century.” 

The budget bills now head to the governor for her signature 

Michigan’s 2021 fiscal year begins Oct. 1.