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Governor Granholm Signs Final 2010 Budgets, Pledges to Continue Fight to Protect Funding for K-12, Higher Education, Health Care, Public Safety
October 30, 2009
LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced that she has signed the final budget bills for the 2010 fiscal year, ensuring that government operations will continue without interruption, and pledged to keep fighting for the priorities that are important to Michigan families.
"Michigan has a budget in place but not the budget we need," Granholm said. "I will not pretend that this is a good budget. This budget cuts, rather than supports, Michigan's most pressing priorities: educating our children and helping them pay for a college education, maintaining health care for our most vulnerable citizens, and keeping police officers and fire fighters on the streets of our communities."
While Granholm recognized that the state's budget must be cut to bring spending in line with revenues - she has already cut more than $10 billion from state budgets, more than any governor in history - she said the 2010 budget cuts go too far.
"The Legislature's budget makes cuts that are too deep and too painful to Michigan's people," Granholm said. "The Legislature's failure to enact a budget that supports children or college students or affordable health care does not in any way diminish their importance as our priorities, and I will continue to fight for them. I believe the people of Michigan want great schools for their kids, want us to make college and health care affordable, and expect us to keep their streets safe. They are allies in this battle."
While the governor signed budget bills for Community Health; Energy, Labor and Economic Growth; Human Services; Michigan State Police; general government, and higher education, she did use her veto pen to eliminate unnecessary spending.
"If there was something in the budget that we didn't have enough money to fund completely, I vetoed it," Granholm said. "If there were special earmarks, mistakes or bad policy, I vetoed them."
In all, the governor vetoed $127 million in spending for the 2010 fiscal year and noted that had she been able to add revenue to the budget or veto special interest tax loopholes out of it, she would have done so.
Following are the six budget bills signed by the governor:
Department of Community Health
The total operating budget for the Department of Community Health for fiscal year 2010 is $13.1 billion, including $2.3 billion in general fund money.
The budget sent to the governor by the Legislature made significant reductions to vital programs, including an 8 percent reduction to Medicaid providers who serve approximately 1.7 million Michigan citizens and a $40 million reduction to community mental health programs.
"I continue to support additional revenues to restore these drastic reductions to essential services," Granholm said.
Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth
For the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth, the total operating budget is $1.4 billion, which includes $55.1 million in general fund money. The budget includes a total of $124.2 million for the state's No Worker Left Behind program to provide Michigan workers with the skills, training and education needed to transition to jobs in high demand and in emerging industries.
The budget also increases unemployment insurance administration funding by $18 million to provide additional staff to assist Michigan workers filing unemployment insurance claims.
Department of Human Services
The Department of Human Services has a total operating budget of almost $6 billion, including $860.3 million in general fund money.
The governor expressed concern that several programs supported by general fund dollars, including employment and training programs, child welfare improvements, child day-care and juvenile justice, were all drastically reduced from her executive recommendation to meet legislatively-negotiated targets with which she did not agree.
"These general fund reductions create a potential shortfall in state maintenance of effort and match requirements for critical federal block grants that fund child day-care services and basic assistance for low-income families," Granholm said. "I am concerned about the impacts on vulnerable citizens in the face of these shortfalls."
The governor also said she was concerned about the lack of funding to maintain operations at the Nokomis Challenge Center and the community juvenile justice centers.
"These facilities were funded for only one quarter of the fiscal year, and no funding was included to provide alternative placements for the youth currently served by these programs," Granholm said. "I believe these facilities are critical in providing necessary, specialized substance abuse treatment and transition services for youth offenders, and the budget presented to me fails to adequately address the needs of these youth under state care."
Department of State Police
The total operating budget for the Department of State Police is $527.3 million, of which $267.3 million is general fund money.
"I am pleased this bill includes funding for the additional forensic laboratory casework resulting from the closure of the Detroit Crime Laboratory," Granholm said.
However, the governor expressed concern over the Legislature's elimination of funding in the school-aid act for school bus inspections.
"While I clearly support school bus inspections for the safe transport of students, without proper revenues, school districts and intermediate school districts are left with no resources to pay the Department of State Police for school bus inspection services," Granholm said. "Because this is an unfunded mandate, I call on the Legislature to appropriate the necessary resources for this critical service in an effort to protect the safety and security of our most precious resource: our children."
In the interim, the governor has directed the State Police to identify resources within its budget for transfer into the school bus inspection program so bus inspections can continue.
The general government budget provides funding for the departments of Attorney General, Civil Rights, Information Technology, Management and Budget, State and Treasury. It also includes funds for the Executive Office, Michigan Legislature and legislative Auditor General, plus funding for revenue sharing and debt service.
The total budget for general government is $3 billion, which includes $626.9 million in general fund money. For most departments, the budget reflects general fund reductions of 10 percent.
Revenue sharing grants total $991.6 million. Cities, villages and townships will receive $936.3 million, while counties eligible to receive resumed state payments are funded at $55.3 million.
Total spending for higher education is approximately $1.6 billion, which includes $1.5 billion in general funds and $68 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act - State Fiscal Stabilization Fund funding. State university operations are funded at $1.5 billion, a 0.4 percent reduction from current year funding.
"This funding allows our 15 public universities to prepare students for the jobs of today and tomorrow and to conduct research leading to scientific breakthroughs and future economic development," Granholm said.
The governor noted that the $84.5 million appropriated by the Legislature for student financial aid is a reduction of $135 million - more than 61 percent - from the current year. The budget reduces funding for state competitive scholarships by $17.9 million and totally eliminates nursing scholarships, the Michigan Work-Study Program, the Part-Time Independent Student Program, and the Michigan Education Opportunity Grants.
"I am particularly disappointed that the bill includes no funding for the Michigan Promise scholarships, and I strongly encourage the Legislature to get to work on finding the resources to keep this commitment to our students," Granholm said. "We must keep the promise."
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