Lawmaker Says Whitmer Needs To “Think Outside The Box” On Roads

One local lawmaker is looking ahead to the State of the State Address and says he hopes to hear a message of taxpayer accountability.

Republican State Representative Mike Mueller of Linden says when Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer makes her address Wednesday night from the state Capitol in Lansing, he will be listening for her plans on how taxpayer dollars will be used to fix Michigan roads, especially local roads. “I think she needs to think more outside the box and people are tired of politicians saying ‘we’re gonna fix the roads with your tax money’ but then when we pass a bill part of the money goes to this fund or that fund. When you drive to the post office in Linden your car goes through craters. The local roads need to be fixed. We gotta figure out how to get money back to the local communities that fix the roads and again, that comes to accountability. If you give them the money, you better fix the roads.”

Last year, Gov. Whitmer’s proposed 45-cent-per-gallon gas tax to fix Michigan’s crumbling road system was rejected by the GOP-led legislature. She now says she is looking at shorter-term fixes, such as borrowing, that do not require legislative approval. However, Republican State Senator Lana Theis of Brighton Township earlier this month co-sponsored legislation that would limit the state’s ability to do that, saying taxpayers are still paying off previous road bonding debt and that road funding reforms enacted in 2015 will bring an additional $1.2 billion for road repairs by October 1st.

A spokesperson for the Governor previously told WHMI that Whitmer would not be interested in signing any legislation that would limit her executive authority and encouraged majority Republicans to work across the aisle with Democrats to pass a long-term solution. (JK)

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