State Grants Clear Path for Small Michigan Towns to Finally Tackle Road Repairs

State Grants Clear Path for Small Michigan Towns to Finally Tackle Road Repairs

IN MICHIGAN—This month, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration gave out more than $3 million in state grants to help fix up roads in 15 small towns and cities across the state. None of these places have more than 10,000 people living in them.

Whitmer said last week that the Michigan Department of Transportation will give 3.1 million dollars in grants through its Community Service Infrastructure Fund to help smaller towns fix their roads and do other infrastructure projects.

“These grants will help Michigan towns fix their roads more quickly, which will save drivers time and money,” Whitmer said. Please keep working together to fix the roads so people can drive to work, pick up their kids from school, and do other things without damaging their tires or axles.

The fund was formed by lawmakers in 2018 to help Michigan’s smaller towns and cities pay for road repairs. This is important because small towns often don’t have the money to do repairs, and important, one-time funds usually go to the state’s bigger cities.

Since it began, the fund has given about $3 million a year to dozens of small towns and places with 10,000 or fewer people. State officials said that some of the projects chosen this year were chosen because they would have had trouble getting funded without state help.

Michigan has fixed 20,000 lane miles of roads and 1,400 bridges since Whitmer took office. This has supported over 100,000 jobs, and the money given today will add to that number.

For grants from the fund to be given, local towns must match them by 50%. The grants are also given to places that need them the most and have never gotten state money before. For example, 47 cities or villages in 32 Michigan counties got state money last year.

“These grant awards show the governor’s commitment to fixing not only the interstates but also the local roads that my constituents use every day to drive to their favorite restaurant or take their kids to after-school activities,” said state Rep. Reggie Miller (D-Van Buren Township). “This help with keeping our roads in good shape will make Milan and other cities like it in the state better places to live.”

This month, money was sent to 14 other cities or towns in 13 counties besides Milan. Birch Run, Charlotte, Clifford, Fennville, Linden, Grand Blanc, Leslie, Milford, Portland, Rockwood, South Haven, Stevensville, St. Joseph, and Yale are some of them.

The funds, which ranged from $97,000 to $250,000, are meant to pay for everything from repaving roads and replacing culverts to taking other safety precautions.

In a statement, state Rep. Joey Andrews (D-St. Joseph) said, “Maintaining local roads in good shape is important to attract visitors, especially for towns that depend on tourism to keep their economies going.” This is also good for people who live there full-time. “This is good for both of our communities.”

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