Making Democracy Work

Resources for Study and Consensus

Papers and links for resources related to current programs

Michigan Government Finance Study, LWV of Michigan

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Delegates at the LWVMI Convention in May, 2015, voted to update our Taxation and Budgeting Position*. The 2015-16 state budget is $53.7 billion (adjusted gross appropriations) and the major revenue sources are listed on the accompanying chart. Here is a general picture of how that money is spent:

  • 46.7% for health and human services
  • 26.5% for public education (K-12) and Dept. of Ed ($14.2 billion)
  • 7.2% for transportation (roads, public transportation, etc.)
  • 3.7% for corrections
  • 3.6% for community colleges and higher education
  • 12.3% for all other programs of state government (agriculture, state parks, Secretary of State, etc.) Source: Senate Fiscal Agency, April 2016

Michigan's Constitution and state laws provide for three major divisions of the total state budget: General Fund represents the portion of the total state budget where the legislature makes decisions about spending. Comprising only 19 percent of the total, the general fund includes many of the programs and services of state government: agriculture, State Police, Secretary of State, corrections, higher education, natural resources, etc. State School Aid Fund represents the budget for public K-12 education in Michigan. Sources of revenue for the State School Aid Fund (SAF) include the sales and use tax, income taxes, the state education property tax, the lottery, the federal government and other taxes. SAF funds are distributed to local school districts through the guaranteed foundation allowance Restricted Monies represent 43 percent of the total state budget. Use of these funds is restricted by state or federal law or by the Michigan Constitution. These monies are designated for a specific purpose such as transportation, constitutional revenue sharing, or the federal match for Medicaid.

  • Note: The Committee has changed the title of the Position from "Taxation and Budgeting" to "Government Finance", to more clearly reflect the content of the position.

RESOURCES FOR THE STUDY

Powerpoint Presentation Information for Local Leagues, includes pie charts of revenues and expenditures.

Citizens Research Council of Michigan, Outline of Michigan Taxes, 2016. (Note: Click on "Full Report" to see the entire booklet. The booklet contains detailed information on all of Michigan's 60 state and local taxes.)

Citizens Research Council of Michigan, 2013 Tax Revenue Comparisons: Michigan and the US Average, Memorandum 1140, May 2016.(Click on "Full Report")

House Fiscal Agency, Road Funding Package--Enacted Analysis, November 16, 2015

National Conference of State Legislatures, Recent Legislative Action to Change Gas Taxes.

The four offices listed below have useful resources concerning the state budget process and the state's taxation system:

Financing Public Education in the Midland Area

The Midland Area Position may be found here

Background paper on local school financing

The LWVMI Position on Education:Structure, Financing and Goals.

Community Conversations

An Issue Guide from The Center for Michigan may be found here

Restoring trust in government,a community conversation from The Center for Michigan, may be found here