State addressing infrastructure needs
Executive Order 2016-5 creates 27 member commission to identify long-term strategies to ensure Michigan’s infrastructure remain safe and efficient.
During the 2016 State of the State Address, Governor Snyder announced his plan to create a “21st Century Infrastructure Commission.” The commission would be charged with identifying strategic best practices for modernizing the state’s water, sewer, transportation, energy, and communication infrastructure. Executive Order 2016-5 signed on March 10, 2016 by the Governor created the 27-member commission. The Governor also requested $165 million in the 2017 FY budget to create a new Michigan Infrastructure Fund. The commission’s final recommendation will help determine how this fund is used if it remains in the budget when passed by the legislature.
Briefly, the Executive Order states:
- “Whereas, sound and modern infrastructure is vital to the health and well-being of the people of Michigan, as well as Michigan’s economy and vibrant communities to continue and accelerate our economic comeback, we must preserve, maintain and improve our infrastructure now and in the future;
- Whereas, it is important that the state of Michigan develop a comprehensive, coordinated and effective infrastructure system long-term vision that guides strategic infrastructure planning, investment, and prioritization in Michigan.
- Whereas, Michigan should look to experts and leaders from across the state . . . to identify current conditions and future infrastructure needs, develop a comprehensive strategy for identifying and prioritizing investments in transportation, water and sewer, wastewater infrastructure, energy, telecommunications and other areas, and the funding of these investments”
The commission with fifteen Governor appointees, four legislative appointees and eight state department directors (or their representative) is an autonomous and independent entity. Its authority, power, duties and responsibilities are completely separate from any department in the executive branch.
The commission members must have a specific expertise and interest in infrastructure, including planning and design, underground infrastructure, municipal planning and specific infrastructure areas. They must represent government, business, non-profits, industry and philanthropic communities.
The commission’s assessment and recommendations are due no later than Nov. 30, 2016. The commission will be deemed to have met the charges outlined in the Executive Order 90 days after the issuance and transference of its final report.
The entire Executive Order and list of commission members can be found at http://www.michigan.gov/snyder/0,4668,7-277-57738_57679_57726-381081—,00.html.
A more detailed list of the Executive Order charges to the commission and its members is available in the Planning & Zoning News, April 2016.