Gov. Gretchen Whitmer presented her $79.4 billion fiscal year 2024 budget recommendations on Feb. 8, which contained a host of bipartisan interests and represented many of the Detroit Regional Chamber’s legislative priorities. The Chamber looks forward to bipartisan cooperation in the state Legislature as it reviews the Governor’s proposals and puts forth its own.
Michigan needs to continue investing in education and talent at all levels, prioritize infrastructure improvements and innovation, and ensure Michigan stays competitive in attracting and retaining businesses as a place where the next generation of professionals and entrepreneurs wants to grow. The items below will help make that happen.
Building for the Future
Expanding Michigan Reconnect: Lowering the age of participants from 25 years old to 21 years old gets more people back into the classroom and working towards the degrees needed to make Michigan a high-tech destination, leader in electrification, and source of ever-essential health care professionals.
Learn about Detroit Reconnect.
Increasing Investment in Going PRO: This program has shown time and time again the importance and benefit of employer-specific job training. Increasing funding for Going PRO by $35 million allows even more companies to qualify as participants and more Michigan residents to get much-needed training to thrive in a career.
Additional Higher-Education Funding: The proposed budget increases funding for colleges, universities, and community colleges and makes higher education more affordable and accessible by contributing additional support to the Michigan Achievement Scholarship.
Supporting Michigan’s Children: Budget recommendations also included putting more money into the foundation allowance, which gives each school district additional funds to invest as they see fit. The budget also begins expanding Universal Pre-K to all 4-year-olds in Michigan, which can alleviate child care challenges and create a more equitable playing field in education.
Sustainable SOAR Funding: Michigan needs a long-term, sustainable funding source for the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund (SOAR). Including SOAR funding in this proposed budget will enable the state to be and reinforce its position as a place all companies need to consider when looking to expand, grow, onshore, or relocate.
Michigan Main Street Initiative: This program would help small and microbusinesses start, grow, and expand.
Fee Increases: Michigan has been well-positioned to be very competitive with neighboring states. Increasing fees can be a hindrance when it comes to growing and attracting new business.
Savings and Debt: This budget continues to invest one-time dollars to rainy day funds and to pay down long-term debt. This budget deposits $200 million into the budget stabilization fund, creates a new budget stabilization fund in school aid funded at $900 million, and an additional $566 million payment to the Michigan Public Employees Retirement System.
Mobility and MICHauto
Expanding EV Charging Stations: To continue growing its electric vehicle (EV) market and retain its global leadership in the automotive and mobility space, Michigan needs to enhance charging infrastructure, particularly by increasing the number and accessibility of charging stations across the state. These budget recommendations invest $65 million toward this need.
Incentivizing EV Adoption: The proposed budget calls for up to $2,400 in tax savings on EV purchases.