Lawmakers Debate How Much To Spend On Michigan Bridges - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Lawmakers Debate How Much To Spend On Michigan Bridges

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LANSING, MI (WLNS) - While lawmakers debate how much to spend on roads right now, a new push is underway to fix crumbling bridges in Michigan.

Now this raises concerns about safety while going over and under those structures.

6 News Capitol Correspondent Tim Skubick has more -

Coming to a billboard near you real soon, a message that more money is needed to avert a bridge disaster.

Everyone remembers the horrific disaster in Minnesota where the collapse of a bridge overpass produced injuries and concerns and it could happen in Michigan.

The senate recently approved $100 million for more snow removal and the GOP speaker wants to bump that figure to $215 millon.

But road interests are concerned about bridge safety.

"When you can see gaps, air and light through concrete and exposed beams that's pretty bad," said Eric Steck, concrete industry.

Reporter: "And if we don't do this?"

Steck: "You will potentially see failures."

But the polling data is telling this senator the typical driver does not grasp the severity of the safety issue.

I just don't know that the average person understands what that means to them every single day in the safety of our people," said State Senator Gretchen Whitmer, (d), East Lansing.

The governor who tried unsuccessfully last year to squeeze $1.2 billion out of the legislature for road and bridge repairs was asked if the bridges in Michigan are safe.

"Well, that's always a concern. As you go on your commute to and from work, if you go over or under eight bridges or more, one of those statistically is structurly deficient," said Governor Snyder.

"If you look at the numbers, it's about 12-13 percent of our bridges. That doesn't mean there are unsafe and should be closed, but that's not a good feeling."

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