Michigan House Republicans
Rep. Martin opposes cuts to school safety, irresponsible spending in state budget
RELEASE|June 27, 2024
Contact: David Martin

State Rep. David Martin voted against a $82.5 billion spending plan that prioritizes pet projects over the critical needs of Michigan residents.

Martin, R-Davison, said the new state budget relies on a tax increase that has families, seniors and small businesses handing over more of their hard-earned money to the state. It also raids teachers’ retirement accounts to the tune of $670 million. Meanwhile, the budget drastically reduces school safety funding and ignores local roads that are badly in need of repair.

The new budget cuts school safety and mental health grant funding by more than $300 million, leaving just $26.5 million to help schools fund resource officers, mental health services, and other critical programs that protect kids.

“Gutting school safety and mental health funding is a serious mistake,” Martin said. “All students should feel safe and supported when they’re at school. I want to know what special project the Democrats who crafted this budget think is more important than the health and safety of our kids.”

Following the passage of the budget, the Michigan Education Association even issued a public statement calling for the Legislature to rethink the school safety cuts and pass supplemental funding to back student mental health and safety efforts.

Even though Democrats cut school safety funding by 90% and ignored calls to add dedicated funding for local road repairs, they pumped funding into pet projects like a $7.5 million drone program, $3 million in incentives for people who purchase e-bikes, and a $25 million program to build state-owned EV charging stations.

The budget also funds hundreds of millions of dollars in pork projects that were added at the last minute, including $17 million for zoos in Lansing and Metro Detroit, $2.5 million for professional baseball stadiums, $5 million for a theater in Detroit, $18 million for various public and private sports facilities, $1.9 million for a pool in Saginaw, and $300,000 to cover public Wi-Fi in downtown Detroit.

Past recipients of these “enhancement” grants have misused state funding, including one prominent MEDC appointee who created a new business and then used a $20 million grant to pay for first-class plane tickets and a $4,500 coffee maker.

“The budget fails to reflect the true priorities of Michigan families,” Martin said. “Essential services like school safety and road repairs are severely underfunded, while millions are wasted on pet projects with little accountability. Michigan taxpayers deserve a budget that prioritizes the well-being and safety of their families.”

The new state budget for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1 was pushed through the House early this morning in two party-line votes.


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