GOP wants to raid the Michigan’s Natural Resources Trust Fund

Here we go again.

Republicans in the Michigan Legislature are talking about using money from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund to build roads and dredge harbors. Such action is currently prohibited because a voter approved amendment to the Michigan Constitution requires that the Trust Fund be used exclusively to acquire public land and develop recreational resources — such as parks, trails and fishing piers.

The Republicans made a run at the Natural Resources Trust Fund in the last legislative session, and their attempt to raid the fund went nowhere. This time, the GOP may have more resolve. Republican leaders are talking about asking voters to approve a constitutional amendment that would allow Trust Fund monies to be used for things other than buying land and developing recreational resources.

I find this so odd.

Michigan’s Natural Resources Trust Fund, which is funded by royalties from oil and natural gas wells, is the envy of most other states.┬áThe fund has been an unqualified success. I know this because I’ve written about the fund in the past. Read my article here.

The Trust Fund has awarded 1,957 grants totaling $959 million during its 36-year history: $757 million went to buying land; the remaining $202 million was used to develop outdoor recreation facilities. The program is wildly popular.

So why do Michigan Republicans want to fix something that isn’t broken. For that, you’ll have to read this article in the Detroit News.

 

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7 Responses to GOP wants to raid the Michigan’s Natural Resources Trust Fund

  1. tcabala says:

    Not a wise idea and unfortunately short-sighted. Pure Michigan is all about our superb natural assets, including state owned lands and the recreational activities associated with them.

    • Tom Hamilton says:

      Yes, The White Lake Public Advisory Council, the White Lake Chamber, and our area White Lake politicians all know West Michigan 34th District Republican Senator Geoff Hansen is supporting the stealing our NRTF money to help is developer pals stop the competition of public access to public waters, and to make sure the NRTF funding is gone for the 25% recreational funding to deliberately hurt his local community parks. This is nothing new for White Lake Republicans. The WLPAC project to rewrite Republican history with the Environmental History of White Lake will find a ways to cover up the local history of environmental corruption.

  2. jclift says:

    I find this issue warrants a short history lesson. The Natural Resources Trust Fund was created upon the idea that if the state was selling one-time, non-renewable assets (oil and gas), the money should be used in a manner that benefits all future Michigan residents. Buying parks and developing them is the perfect use of these funds. Maintenance is the ongoing responsibility of all of us who use them.

  3. keepersofthewater says:

    Reblogged this on Keepers of the Water.

  4. Well, this is one republican that says keep the politicians hands out of the trust fund! The trust fund has reached its cap, so they have any new money coming from royalties to play with.

  5. sharkbytes says:

    Raiding funds the taxpayers designated is NOT good. And I love so many of the things that have been done with this money.

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