Skubick: Whitmer hears hints of support from GOP leaders on road funds

Michigan

A major development in Lansing today as Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has nailed down a key Republican vote on her efforts to raise new revenue to fix the roads.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer took some flack last night for not laying out her plan to fix the roads, including a expected revenue increase.

Republican House Speaker Lee Chatfield called it, “I do think last night there were some missed opportunities.”

But the governor has a new opportunity.

If she wants to raise new revenue, Senate Republican leader Mike Shirkey, for the first time, says he is in.

“There is no way we’re going to fix the problem that’s been fifty years in the making without coming up with new revenue for infrastructure.”

However, Senator Shirkey says that is the last option.

“First step, agree on the goal. Second step, make sure there aren’t ways to do something with current spending and the third is to fill in and start talking about new revenue.”

And more good news for the governor from Speaker Chatfield.

“Everyone has agreed our roads need new revenue but before we simply say we’re going to go back to the pocketbooks of our taxpayers and raise revenue without cutting anywhere else, I think that’s irresponsible.”

Picking up this qualified Republican support for new road revenue means she has another reason to hug the two Republican leaders again.  

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