LANSING (AP) – Gov. Rick Snyder is seeking to boost base funding for most of Michigan’s public schools by the largest dollar amount in 17 years.
Snyder on Wednesday will ask lawmakers for a $240 per-pupil increase for school districts that get the minimum grant, which would amount to a 3.1 percent boost for more 75 percent of traditional districts and all charter schools. Higher-funded districts receiving the basic grant would get $120 more per student in the 2018-19 budget, which would be a 1.4 percent increase.
Snyder also will propose shifting $325 million in general funds to road and bridge work, more than double what is called for under a 2015 transportation-funding deal that is gradually being phased in, according to the state budget office.
The Republican governor is due to give his eighth and final budget presentation to the GOP-led Legislature, where an election-year push for tax cuts could conflict with his spending priorities and his warnings of growing budget pressures.
Since last month’s State of the State speech, in which Snyder first broadly mentioned plans to spend more than usual on K-12 schools and roads, he has proposed a steep rise in a fee for taking waste to landfills and creating a new state fee on water customers. He said the moves are needed to pay for environmental cleanup and to improve water infrastructure.
His administration last week announced plans to close a Muskegon-area prison to save nearly $19 million in the budget.
Michigan’s minimum per-student funding is $7,631. A $240 increase would be the biggest since the 2001-02 fiscal year, when a $500 hike was enacted. The only other time the minimum amount was boosted by more than $200 since then was in the 2006-07 budget.
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