“You have cases being dismissed because we don’t have people to process the evidence,” state budget director John Nixon said. Snyder will unveil more details of his public safety plan in a special address in March.
Local governments would see a 2 percent increase in constitutional revenue sharing and a 9.2 percent increase in revenue sharing money awarded by state law. Much of the money would be tied to incentives given for “best practices” that help local governments run more cheaply and efficiently. County governments would see their revenue-sharing program replaced by the incentive program rolled out to other local governments this year.
Snyder also wants to spend $4.5 million to support financial review teams for ailing school districts and local governments and would increase five-fold the grants available to help local governments consolidate services, from $5 million to $25 million.
The state’s rainy day fund would get a $130 million infusion. The state put $255 million into the fund this year, the first deposit since 2004.
The budget also would take $119 million from the general fund to match federal transportation dollars. Without that money, Michigan won’t raise enough in gasoline and diesel fuel taxes to get all the federal dollars for which it’s eligible. Snyder has urged lawmakers to find ways to raise $1.4 billion more for roads, bridges and transit systems, but it could take a while for lawmakers leery of angering voters to follow that suggestion.
Autism coverage would be provided for children accepted into Medicaid or the MIChild health care program, while $15 million would be set aside to help cover costs for insurance companies that cover autism treatments. The Healthy Kids dental program would be expanded, the basic rate for foster parents would be increased by $3 per day and $60 million in home heating assistance for low-income residents would continue to be raised from ratepayers under Snyder’s plan.
Other areas that would get extra money are food safety, mental health courts, centers for independent living and dam safety. The state would continue offering $25 million in film credits for one more year and put $25 million into the Pure Michigan marketing program, $25 million into encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship and $100 million into business attraction. It also would more than triple the amount spent on arts and cultural grants, to $5 million.
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