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Sen. Outman comments on governor’s 2023 budget recommendations

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes, issued the following statement on Wednesday, following Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 2023 budget presentation delivered by State Budget Director Christopher Harkins:

“Similar to the State of the State address, I am inspired by many of the governor’s words, but wonder whether we will see them come to fruition.

“On paper, I support much of what she put on the table this morning. I support getting more troopers on the road, working to get kids safely back in schools with the resources they need to thrive, and addressing the financial difficulties countless families and businesses across the state are facing. I’m also cautiously optimistic about the governor’s sudden willingness to provide families with tax relief and I support returning money to hardworking taxpayers if we are able.

“I do worry about the director’s suggestion that the governor will continue to look at bonding to help keep her promise to fix the roads. The Legislature approved landmark funding years ago and we have continued to work on the issue since. We are also currently working on legislation that prioritizes bridge repairs. I’d rather see the governor join these discussions instead of borrowing additional money from the next generation.

“Similarly, I have repeatedly stated that we need to be responsible with one-time funds from the federal government. The governor, among others, criticized the Legislature for not simply writing checks because the money is there and available.

“This money belongs to the people and they deserve responsible spending that addresses concerns they have, not a Lansing spending spree.

“As always, the devil can be found in the details. I was pleased with the overall message, but we need more information on her plans.

“I look forward to joining these conversations between the Legislature and the governor, so we can iron out our differences and get the job done for folks across the state.”

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