Republicans attend pricey fundraisers at Treetops and Grand Traverse resorts
LANSING — July 1st is a crucial deadline under state law for the Michigan legislature to approve a budget in order to allow school districts and local governments adequate time to hash out their local finances ahead of the next school year.
Late last week, the state House approved a $65 billion budget featuring a “significant funding boost for schools” to the point that it eliminates “a decades-long funding gap between districts.”
The bill was then sent over to the Republican-led state Senate. That same day, Senate Appropriations Chairman Jim Stamas said that he was “anxious to see what [the budget] has in it.”
Evidently, not anxious enough.
Right now, Stamas is hosting a fundraiser for his “Leadership” PAC at the Treetops Resort golf course in Gaylord with tickets going into the thousands. Republican Senators also hit the links yesterday at Grand Traverse Resort to benefit Sen. Wayne Schmidt’s coffers. Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey was there too, after not being seen for several days.
In the event watches aren’t allowed at the resorts, MDP made a countdown clock in the hopes it gets Senate Republicans to understand they have 30 hours to do their job and get the budget to Governor Whitmer’s desk.
“Let’s not mince words. Republicans in the legislature care more about fundraising for their political campaigns than doing their job by ensuring the schools and cities within their districts have the resources they need to operate smoothly,” said Lavora Barnes, MDP Chair. “We urge Shirkey, Stamas, Schmidt, and their fellow Republicans attending these fundraisers to remember what they were elected for and understand that Michigan families can’t afford to wait for these appropriations to be finalized. That’s what it means to actually represent those that put you in office, which is why Governor Whitmer has been seated at the budget table ready to have a discussion at a moment’s notice. Republicans need to get off the golf course, get back to work, and appropriate these funds for public school students without delay.”