LANSING – State Representative Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids), in response to Gov. Rick Snyder’s State of the State Address tonight, said that the Legislature needs to focus on making Michigan’s economy work for everyone. Snyder addressed the looming budget deficit, caused by massive tax breaks and incentives to big corporations. Coupled with tax increases on seniors and working families, Michigan’s recovery lags behind the rest of the nation.

“After four years of unfair tax policies and corporate handouts, we are now faced with a deficit, and far too many people are still looking for a good-paying job,” Brinks said. “Prioritizing big corporations over families hasn’t worked. We need to flip the equation and put regular people first, so that Michigan’s economy will work for everyone.”

Snyder expressed his support for the proposal to raise money for road improvements, which comes in the form of a 1 cent sales tax increase that must be approved by voters on the ballot in May. House Democrats backed the plan last term, which included restoring the Earned Income Tax Credit to its former level and increasing funding for schools.

“The road funding plan isn’t perfect, but our kids will benefit from increased investment in education and working families will get tax relief from the restoration of the Earned Income Tax Credit.” Brinks said.

Brinks reiterated her priorities of working for everyday people on several issues. Per-pupil funding in public schools is less than it was in 2009. And rather than continuing the failed approach of massive handouts to wealthy corporations, Brinks and many of her colleagues want to increase support for entrepreneurs and the small businesses that truly drive our economy.

“We need to work on providing opportunities for people who have been left behind by policies that favor big corporations and expect working families and students to foot the bill,” Brinks said. “Moving ahead, I look forward to working across the aisle to find solutions to the challenges that face our state in a way that will benefit everyone.”