The newly formed Roads and Economic Development committee held the first of three committee hearings this morning on a package of bills introduced by House Republicans to fix Michigan’s crumbling roads.
HB 4610 allows townships contributing greater than 50% to a road project over $50,000 to require competitive bidding and the League has no position on this legislation due to it having no direct impact on our communities.
HB 4611 would require competitive bidding on all MDOT and local road projects over $100,000, and HB 4613 would require MDOT and local road agencies to secure warranties for projects over $1 million. We are currently opposed to these two bills as part of this package. The League believes we must find a sustainable long-term solution to the problem that includes new revenue that is dedicated to the entire transportation system.
The proposed package of bills only has $50 million in new revenue with the remaining billion coming from reprioritizing General Fund spending and projected growth. It neglects to make a much need investment in transit and jeopardizes economic development funding many of our communities benefit from. This plan impacts the long-term certainty our communities need to plan and one of the key factors for our opposition.
The League is committed to working with the legislature towards a long term solution and we are hopeful that solution can found sooner rather than later.
John LaMacchia is a Legislative Associate for the League handling transportation, infrastructure, and energy issues. He can be reached at email@example.com or 517-908-0303.