Senator Dave Robertson
   
 

Robertson outlines governor's budget proposal

Governor Snyder recently presented his plan for the next state budget. His proposal continues to build on our efforts over the past three years to improve our economy and make state government more efficient. Already our work to transform Michigan into a jobs-first state has helped in the creation of more than 220,000 private sector jobs. I applaud his focus on continuing the state's economic recovery.

I am also happy to see increased support for educating our students. The K-12 funding proposal alone represents a $1 billion increase in state tax dollar support since 2011. Education is a crucial key to every child's future so we must continue our strong investment in education.

Along with the emphasis on putting more people back to work and preparing our children for the future, the governor's budget blueprint addresses quality roads and safe communities.

While the budget talks will continue well into the spring, the Senate recently addressed an urgent matter by approving $100 million in emergency road funding. The money will come from the Roads and Risks Reserve Fund to help local communities with pothole repair and snow removal expenses from this record-breaking winter. Funds will be split among state roads (39.1 percent), county roads (39.1 percent) and city/village roads (21.8 percent).

To report a pothole

If you notice a pothole forming on a state trunkline, which is an "M," "US," or "I" route, you can report it by calling the Pothole Hotline at 888-296-4546. To report potholes and other problems related to local roads, contact your local city or county road commission.

The state has a claims process for motorists whose vehicles have been damaged by hitting a pothole on a state trunkline, but restrictive conditions apply. For more information, go to http://www.michigan.gov/mdot/0,4616,7-151-9615_30883-93194--,00.html.

2014 Taxpayer Guide now available

The booklet, a reference for the 2013 tax year, contains information on Michigan property taxes, homestead property tax credits, farmland and open space tax relief, the home heating credit program, and individual income taxes. The material may be helpful in filling out state income tax forms, however it is not designed to provide line-by-line instructions or as a substitute for Michigan Department of Treasury tax instruction booklets.

Please visit my website for a link to the tax guide or contact my office for a print copy.