Michigan Agri-Business Association hopes MDARD is funded in budget compromise

The Michigan Agri-Business Association is hopeful the state budget agreement reached Monday will fully fund critical ag department functions. 

President Chuck Lippstreu issued a statement saying they applaud Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer, and Republican Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and Speaker Lee Chatfield for a framework agreement to address the state’s budget shortfall.  Lippstreau says many functions of state government are critical for the success of Michigan’s agricultural sector, and MABA is hopeful the budget will fully equip the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and other state agencies to continue their important work on behalf of farmers and rural businesses.  He also says members recognize that addressing the situation facing Michigan’s budget will require federal collaboration, and they continue to encourage Congress to act on additional funding.

The budget agreement addresses a 2.2-billion-dollar General Fund and School Aid shortfall with a combination of state rainy day funds and federal coronavirus relief dollars.  While federal coronavirus relief will help fund schools, first responders, and local governments, there will also be reduced regular state aid to those entities.  A state hiring and discretionary spending freeze is also part of the budget agreement.

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