This week, the Michigan House and Senate passed the budget bills that are now headed to Gov. Whitmer for her review.
Last week, we passed the School Aid K-12 budget. I voted “No” on this budget. The priority of the Legislature should be ensuring that all our students have access to a quality education, and unfortunately, this budget missed the mark. We’re still not making the full funding investment we need to change the downward trajectory of public education in our state. There is no built-in accountability for charter operators looking to make a profit off our children’s education and this budget sends the same dollars to virtual schools as to brick-and-mortar schools. And the much-needed funding for literacy coaches, who play a critical role in closing the literacy gap and ensuring our students are set up for a lifetime of success, is still lacking.
This budget affects families in our district directly. I’ve heard from many of you regarding the Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) in Genesee County. As the father of a child who will soon start school, I understand the importance of children having access to education at a young age. It’s greatly beneficial to their growth and development. The lack of funding for this program’s expansion was just one more reason I voted “No” on the School Aid K-12 Budget.
This Tuesday we passed fifteen budgets. I supported those that I thought met the needs of our state, but some of the other budgets had significant flaws that I felt needed to be addressed prior to passage by the Legislature and did not earn my support. One of the budgets I supported was for the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, which includes an additional $120 million investment in drinking water protection including investment in drinking water infrastructure and in response to PFAS across the state.
Once these budgets are placed on Gov. Whitmer’s desk, she will decide whether to sign them or veto them in whole or in part. While every single department’s budget passed both chambers last week they must be approved by Gov. Whitmer prior to Oct. 1 to prevent a shutdown.
While we wait to hear, if you have any questions or concerns regarding the state budget or anything else, don’t hesitate to contact my office at (517)373-7515 or email me at JohnCherry@house.mi.gov.
The Flint Public Library board recently adopted a renovation plan to keep the 60-year-old building and its systems in working order. Under the plan, the entire interior of the library will be renovated. Significant changes would include:
- Doubling children’s learning space
- Doubling digital learning space, including three tech-rich classrooms
- 66 percent more space for local history and genealogy, including a storage vault
- 6 study rooms, 9 meeting rooms and 4 classrooms
- Making an additional 16,000 sq. ft. available to the public through reconfiguration of existing space
- Making the building more accessible for people with disabilities
Want to see what the renovation would look like? Please drop in during one of the libraries upcoming open houses to see the design, explore a 3D flythrough and ask any questions you might have.
All meetings will be held at Flint Public Library, 1026 E. Kearsley Street in Flint. A Sign language interpreter will be provided.
Remaining open houses are below:
Tuesday, Oct. 1
Tuesday, Oct. 29
For more information, visit the Flint Public Library’s website.