UP to see investments in new state budget, including $15M Regional Fund
Mich. (WLUC) – Significant investments are coming to the U.P. under the state’s next budget.
The $76 billion state budget includes spending on a number of projects in the U.P.
$15 million is devoted to U.P. economic development overseen by InvestU.P.
“We think it’s a really transformative opportunity,” InvestU.P. CEO Marty Fittante said. “It’s really the first time that money of this significance has been entrusted to an economic development organization to tackle the priorities an area has.”
Fittante says this investment will help the organization address housing.
“The biggest priority by far is trying to tackle the housing shortage that we across the Upper Peninsula,” Fittante said. “My expectation is that we will look to invest most of those funds into trying to build out housing development across the Upper Peninsula.”
The budget includes $42 million for increased wages and benefits for state corrections staff.
Staff will see a 5% salary rate increase.
“Our corrections officers work so much overtime, it is an exhausting and dangerous job,” Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said. “Putting more resources so that we can ensure that they have the support they need to stay and to continue their jobs is really important.”
K-12 schools will see a $2.6 billion funding increase for a total budget of $19.6 billion.
$575 million will go to educator recruitment programs.
“One of the most important people in your child’s life is the person in front of the classroom,” Whitmer said. “Putting resources in to help students who are going to school right now to become teachers, helping student teachers. These are investments that will help districts have a robust staff of great educators who can deliver for kids.”
The budget also allocates $10 million for Buffalo Reef for a dock jetty and to dredge harmful stamp sands out of Lake Superior.
Click here for an extended interview with Governor Whitmer about the state budget.
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