Gov. Rick Snyder signs legislation aimed to unleash $5 billion in new developments

Gov. Rick Snyder hopes experts may soon provide clarity on when Flint's tap water will be safe to drink without a filter. (Photo Courtesy: MGN)

SAGINAW, Mich. (SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP) --- Michigan may see $5 billion in new developments across the state.

Gov. Rick Snyder traveled to Saginaw where he signed legislation aimed to transform blighted communities across the state.

There is now a glimpse of hope for the historic Bearinger Building in Saginaw, which now sits vacant.

"How do we make communities come back" asked Gov. Snyder. "This is one of the great tools we will be adding to our tool kit to make that happen."

The law is designed to kick start the Michigan Thrive initiative to transform areas overcome by blight.

"What this package will do though will allow construction to happen, development to happen, mixed use - in term of office buildings, retail, commercial activities - different things to happen. And it will hopefully be a catalyst to create a long term environment where we can get higher rent levels and more success," Gov. Snyder said.

Under the new law, developers may now use new special tax credits if they breathe new life into forgotten buildings and areas.

Developers first need approval from local authorities to move forward on projects.

Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof tells us why he worked with Sen. Ken Horn to make this vision a reality.

"I think whether it's Saginaw or Grand Rapids, Muskegon, all these places that have buildings and sites, except for this legislation, wouldn't be put back on the tax rolls. Now you are getting zero or no tax revenue from it. Now you are going to get something, so something is better than zero," he said.

Gov. Snyder stressed the new law will benefit all of Michigan.

For a full list of potential projects that may get a face lift, visit this link.

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