Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Governor Rick Snyder on Michigan's 2015 Budget

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We're the poster child for good budgeting. I wish Washington would look at us. Because

the first thing we do is we balance our budget. The second thing we do is we do it in a timely

and thoughtful fashion with no accounting gimmicks, none of that other kind of monkey

business that goes on in Washington. And the third part of it is we look at our long term

liabilities. We're actually looking out past 2040 and saying are we paying our long term

debts because it's just not about today, but are we thinking about our kids and making

sure we're leaving them stronger and better and addressing some of the issues we inherited?

Some important decisions we're making through this process is are we really putting aside

the money for our long term retirement needs? Because again there's major pension requirements.

Are we putting money in the savings account? Are we making the smart investments like early

childhood education that can make a difference in these kids' lives for decades to come.

And then to the degree we have the opportunity we're very fortunate this year because the

economic comeback in Michigan- we're the Comeback State- is we're going to have some resources

to give back to hardworking tax payers. We're making a massive investment in education,

particularly in K-12 education. If you look at the number, if you compare it to 2011,

compared to 2015, I'm recommending a billion dollar increase, compared to 2011. That's

a huge amount. Over the last three years we've invested over $1.2 billion additional in education.

So we're going to continue that, but it's not just about spending money. The whole focus

of this is to create a system that's sustainable and focused on student growth. Other areas

on education are very exciting. Preschool- our preschool initiative is we're getting

rid of the waiting list for kids in our state that weren't able to go to preschool, and

isn't that critically important to our long term future. We also have resources for the

community colleges and starting to bring our universities back in terms of stronger funding

models there. There's some important programs in the budget for job creation. One that we're

really emphasizing and adding are the skilled-trades. Again if you think about the opportunity to

get a career-tech education for all those people to be a welder, to be a plumber, to

go on the production floor and run that robotic equipment, we're making a big investment there

because I think there are a lot of open jobs there and people just need to make the connection

and get the right skill set, so I'm really excited about that. I think that's a huge

opportunity for Michiganders to get a well-paying job. Many of these jobs may pay $60,000-$80,000

a year, let's fill them! We've been consistently adding dollars to public safety, particularly

the Michigan State Police for several years now. And so I was so excited when I saw the

numbers from 2013 for the first ten months to show that in Pontiac, violent crime was

down 6.5%, in Detroit 7%, Saginaw 16%, Flint 30% with respect to violent crime. Those are

major increases. Let's stay on the gas to show those kind of improvements. In this budget,

I'm continuing to ask more dollars for public safety so we can translate that into more

troopers, more motor carrier enforcement people, more conservation officers because that's

good for all of us. One area that we haven't done enough in because we had so many other

challenges is our environment, and everyone believes in our Great Lakes, our in land lakes,

the wonderful forests in our state, so one thing we're putting dollars towards is helping

prevent invasive species. And it's about people putting the time and effort to say let's keep

invasives under control or out of Michigan. We've got some great things for seniors. Again,

I'm excited about doing a special message later this year but we're taking care of some

important issues. We're getting rid of the waiting list for meals on wheels for example.

We're helping with in home services in terms of getting rid of that waiting list. Because

seniors deserve better services, so those are critically important things that I'm very

proud. Let's make Michigan a no wait state. The positive impact of budgeting the right

way is because it gives certainty and confidence to people who create jobs to say Michigan

is a place that is rock solid that you can count on. The other part is it's creating

that rock solid future for our kids. Too often people when they're in politics when they

do a budget, they think about that one year, and they say well this is my term in office,

so I have to think about it this long. We're thinking about the future- pay down those

long term debts. I've made the joke to people- if you want an exciting job in Michigan, you

should run for governor in 2038. It's going to be a really sweet job because we're thinking

out 20 years or longer about a bright future for our kids.

The Description of Governor Rick Snyder on Michigan's 2015 Budget