Skubick: Snyder looks for ways to pay $4B infrastructure repair tab

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LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – Facing a $4 billion a year price tag to the fix the state’s infrastructure, the governor may turn to what’s called a Public-Private-Partnership but some say that is corporate welfare.

The sink hole in Fraser is emblematic of the state’s infrastructure dilemma.

It’s crumbling and in need of repair not only in the sewer systems but other infrastructure above and below ground.

The governor acknowledged the other night that something must be done, but he did not endorse a way to raise the money.

Republican senator Mike Koala believes the state and Washington don’t have the money to do this. “The state doesn’t have the money and the feds don’t have the money so we need a public private partnership to help pay for it,” insists the senator.

He thinks he has found a way with a public private partnership whereby a private company will put up the front money to get the project started.

For example if the Soo Locks are expanded, once that starts to generate more revenue, the company would get its money back from that.

But some conservatives have concerns on whether that is a waste of money.

“Will the P3 deals that may be struck will they be done well,” said Michael Lavaive of the Mackinac Center Think Tank. “In Chicago they were not but in Indiana it went very well. I don’t call it corporate welfare. It’s just another way to skin a cat and get these projects that need to be done.”

Mr. Kowall will introduce his legislation shortly setting off another battle over how to pay for infrastructure costs.

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