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Horn applauds completion of 2020 state budget

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Tuesday gave final approval to the state of Michigan budget for the 2020 fiscal year.

“Today’s vote puts us one step closer to completing this year’s budget,” said Sen. Ken Horn, R-Frankenmuth. “My colleagues and I passed a reasonable, balanced budget that includes many priorities for our state and I’m optimistic that the governor will sign it.”

The K-12 plan approved last week would invest $15.2 billion in education, a total increase of nearly $400 million from last year’s budget. Under that plan, schools would see a foundation allowance boost, while special education, student safety and skilled trades training also saw notable increases.

“I’m happy to see the state continuing to keep its promise to the trades,” Horn said. “Employers in my district and across the state have been begging for qualified workers and year after year we’re devoting more resources to skilled trades training programs. We have seen major investment in our state’s workers.”

The budget also includes record investments to address the state’s crumbling roads and bridges.  The 2020 plan would invest $5.4 billion in transportation, an increase of more than $2 billion since fiscal year 2010. The bill adds $400 million for local road and bridge construction, which goes a step beyond fully implementing the $1.2 billion roads plan from 2015.

“I said from the beginning of this term, the two biggest issues in Michigan are roads and auto insurance prices,” Horn said. “With a major reform to no-fault behind us, roads have moved to the number one priority. My constituents rejected the proposed $2.5 billion tax hike so instead, we were able to dedicate this money from existing revenue and not raise taxes on working families.”

In addition, Saginaw County will benefit from additional dollars that Horn fought to secure. Saginaw Valley State University will receive $12 million to be used for updates to Brown Hall that will better suit the needs of faculty and improve educational opportunities for students. The university has already committed $7.75 million for the project.

The plan approved Tuesday also includes funding for 100 new beds and destruction of old buildings at the Caro Center; funding to train new state police troopers and corrections officers; funding for water quality analysis and treatment; language requiring state departments to work together to ensure veterans receive their benefits; increased funding to local governments; and support for Michigan farmers.

The finalized budget will now go to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for approval.