Governor Snyder supports Proos two-year budget plan

LANSING – During his first State of the State address, Gov. Rick Snyder called for a two-year state budget said Sen. John Proos, who introduced a biennial budget resolution Wednesday.

“I am enthusiastic that Governor Snyder supports my plan to take a two-year approach to state budgeting. With his help, I am confident that we can finally make it a reality in Michigan,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph. “The governor said ‘job one is jobs.’ I agree 100 percent. Unfortunately, Michigan’s annual budget battles take our eye off creating jobs. Adopting a two-year budget will help free up time for the Legislature to focus on revitalizing the state economy.”

Proos noted that his measure, Senate Concurrent Resolution 4, mirrors his previous attempts in the House to implement a two-year budget, as well as the efforts of former Gov. John Engler.

“Beginning with fiscal year 1994, Governor Engler proposed adoption of two-year budgets for all state government to provide certainty and a planning base for those receiving state aid,” Proos said. “Biennial budgeting and planning for our future will give our schools and local governments the budgetary certainty they need. Like Governor Engler’s plan, my initiative would allow the state to adjust spending as needed while still providing schools and other state aid recipients some certainty about their base level of funding.”

There is strong evidence that biennial budgeting is more conducive to program review and evaluation. Governor Engler also indicated that a two-year budget would give state policymakers almost 18 months to focus on ways to reduce automatic growth in budgetary areas.

“Two-year budgeting helps us on two fronts: it gives schools and locals more certainty as they plan and adopt their own budgets, and it allows lawmakers to focus more time on reducing spending,” Proos said. “Let’s take less time arguing about what the state spends money doing and more time on reviewing our spending, measuring results and improving efficiency.”

SCR 4 has been referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.