Sep 24, 2008

Agreement on Transportation budget averts government shutdown

LANSING -- The Conference Committee on the Michigan Department of Transportation budget reached an agreement Wednesday, averting a government shutdown and layoffs at the MDOT.

The hold up was reaching an agreement on the Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) study. The agreement on the conference report for House Bill 5808 that sets the budget contains language that says the DRIC study can reach its conclusion, but legislative approval would be needed after the department makes a final presentation to the Legislature on the project next year.

It seems a little weird to go this far because that was always there.

Senate Republicans are carrying water for Grosse Pointe billionaire, Republican benefactor and Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moroun in his quest to keep his monopoly and build a second span. U.S. and Canadian officials want to build a new bridge with a private-public partnership further downriver in Detroit.

Both the House and Senate must approve the Conference Committee, and that must come today, Thursday or Oct. 2.

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