LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Rick Outman on Thursday joined lawmakers from both sides of the aisle in approving legislation that would outline $4.8 billion in federal and state funding for necessary infrastructure and state park improvements, along with overhauls to the state’s troubled Unemployment Insurance Agency.
“This plan makes major headway on some of the state’s most critically needed road and water improvement projects, while also setting aside one-time funds to improve the lives of Michiganders across the state,” said Outman, R-Six Lakes, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services. “These funds will help to ensure the long-term health of our state by ensuring folks have access to drinking water, improving local wastewater and water infrastructure systems, investing in recreation opportunities for residents and working to iron out some of the kinks and improve customer service at the UIA.”
Senate Bill 565 would use $4.1 billion in federal funding and $571 million in state resources to make important infrastructure investments across the state, including over $1.7 billion to help communities improve their drinking water and wastewater infrastructure — with at least 25% of drinking water funding dedicated to replacing lead pipes.
The bill features $450 million to make infrastructure upgrades at state and local parks, over $322 million in federal American Rescue Plan funds for small local governments, nearly $317 million in federal funding to fixing aging roads and bridges, $250 million to rebuild destroyed or damaged dams and prioritize risk reduction projects at other dams in the state, and $250 million to help improve broadband connectivity to more households and small businesses.
SB 565 also designates $50 million to help install filtered water stations in schools, $60 million to help reduce PFAS or other contaminants from drinking water and $35 million to fix failing septic systems.
In addition to much-needed infrastructure upgrades, the bill also would invest nearly $140 million to improve service at the UIA to help Michigan workers who lost their jobs. HB 5525 The funding would go to improve customer service, enhance anti-fraud protection, and to reduce the backlog and improve timelines for issuing payments.
“This was a tremendous opportunity for us to responsibly use resources to make transformative changes to the state that will benefit Michigan residents long into the future,” Outman said. “This legislation responsibly puts funds where they can be best spent, and I hope the governor makes good on her promise to sign this agreement into law.”
After Thursday’s votes, both bills are on their way to the governor’s desk for consideration.