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A closer look at Michigan’s budget

(FILE: WWMT)

MICHIGAN (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – Tuesday is Tax Day, so by now you should know how much money you coughed up to both the state and federal governments.

To fill you in on who and what your money is going toward in Michigan, Newschannel 3’s Nick Minock sat down with the governor’s state budget director to break down the state budget. We asked him what, if any, waste remains in Michigan’s 56-billion-dollar budget.

Behind the numbers and spreadsheets are families who depend on the government services we pay for.

“Michigan taxpayers can rest assured their tax money is not going to waste,” said Michigan Budget Director Al Pscholka.

Pscholka is the new State Budget Director. Hired by Governor Rick Snyder, Pscholka and his staff are tasked with implementing this year’s budget.

“I would describe this budget as lean, as tough, and fair,” said Pscholka.

For every tax dollar you hand over, about 45 cents goes towards Health and Human Services, 30 cents to education, ten cents to jobs, seven cents to government services, a nickel to public safety, and two cents goes toward the environment.

Pscholka says the state is currently on the path to paying off its debt.

“If you want to run for governor, 2038 is the year to do it,” said Pscholka. “You can do the Dave Ramsey screen and yell and burn the mortgage in 2038.”

If you thought Michigan was a high-tax state, Pscholka says it isn’t, at least not anymore. Pscholka made that statement despite a hike in the state’s gas tax that is expected to go toward road improvements.

“There’s an additional, about $250 million that will go into roads this year,” said Pscholka.

Pscholka says the governor’s long term plan is to increase road funding to $1.2 billion by 2021.

Michigan lawmakers are currently working on the state’s budget for the next fiscal year.

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