LANSING, MI (WLNS) – Right on the heels of the governor signing the state budget Wednesday, people are still talking about the $400 million that will be going to repair the state’s roads.
6 News Justin Kree got to the bottom of whether $400 million is enough to do that or just kicking a can down another crumbling road.
Some local surface streets have more holes and craters than the surface of the moon.
The legislature is throwing $400 million to try and fix the problem and while the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association is thankful for the money, they say it’s just not enough.
“$400 million is about 1/3 of what we really need. We need $1.2 billion ongoing every year, just to maintain our current system right now,” said Lance Binoniemi, government affairs for MITA.
Senate republicans plan on talking roads all summer long. They want to look at what else can be cut from the budget to bring in road money by the truck loads.
The first thing to go was the state’s film incentives, giving roads an extra $50 million.
“The film credits were a very easy cut. It’s unfortunate we won’t have more Batman movies made at MSU, but we want our roads fixed,” said Senator Rick Jones (R), Grand Ledge.
The breakdown of the $1.2 billion is 39 percent is expected to go to state highways, 39 percent will go to county roads and 22 percent will go towards city and local streets.
Lawmakers have heard other ways to gain money instead of cutting. Michigan receives 19 cents for every gallon of gas sold. One of the ways would be to increase that tax.
“We advocate for traditional user fees. Gas tax increase, Registration fee increases, we think those who use the system should pay for the system. If you’re using the system more you should be paying more because you’re putting more damage on the roads.”
There is no question Michigan will be seeing orange this summer and frustrated drivers, but if nothing is done now, the moon will soon be smoother.
“Every year we postpone finding a real comprehensive solution, our need grows about $100 million every year.”
6 News asked viewers if $400 million is enough to fix Michigan’s roads, 75 percent said no and 25 percent said yes.