Sterling Heights City Council has adopted a resolution urging Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Legislature to create a long-term, sustainable plan to fund the repair and maintain Michigan’s roads and bridges.
This will allow repairs to be done in an equitable manner that does not jeopardize local government funding and ensures municipalities are able to address the significant challenges presented by the poor condition of local roads.
On March 5, 2019 Governor Gretchen Whitmer released her State budget proposal for the 2020 fiscal year. The proposal included a 45 cent/gallon gas tax increase to raise $2.5 billion annually in new dedicated road funding. The existing 26 cent gas tax would continue to be distributed through the PA 51 formula, while this new 45 cent increase would be distributed through a new formula that focuses on economically significant roads. Under this new formula proposal, 70% of funds raised would be distributed to state-owned roads.
The new distribution formula results in municipalities receiving a significantly smaller portion of the new funding than under the current PA 51 formula. Under that current formula, municipalities receive 22% of revenue collected while the proposed formula distributes only 6% of new gas tax revenue to municipalities.
“While we certainly applaud the Governor’s commitment to fixing Michigan’s roads, this effort must be equitable and not compromise the ability of local governments to meet the tremendous need for local road funding,” said Sterling Heights Mayor Michael Taylor. “Under the current proposal, Sterling Heights would actually lose more than $600,000 in road funding.”
“The upkeep of roadways and neighborhood streets in Sterling Heights is essential to the distinctive quality of life we enjoy here,” said Sterling Heights City Manager Mark Vanderpool. “The City has allocated significant funding to improving our major roads and neighborhood streets, including the voter-approved Safe Streets dedicated millage that generates $3 million annually. This burden should not be made more difficult by a new funding formula that diverts monies from local government.”
For further information, contact Sterling Heights Community Relations Director Melanie Davis at 586.446.2471 (o), 586.303.0923 (m) or firstname.lastname@example.org.