State Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey said that he hopes that the budget could be worked out by month end, but would not be surprised to see some politically motivated hold ups; especially when the Executive Branch and the Legislative Branch are controlled by two different parties.

“We’d like to get the budget done by the end of June. This is the first budget with a new Governor. I don’t think it is unreasonable to expect there to be a bit of friction and even some delays in getting it done. Nobody should interpret that as anything other than normal politics,” Shirkey said.

Another issue that comes about is the situation with Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline. Shirkey said that, “I’m absolutely concerned with the direction my Attorney General is taking on that particular issue; and I’m starting to become concerned with the direction that my Governor has taken.” He called the negotiations between Enbridge and Governor Whitmer an “unworkable situation” given the demands she has placed on the company. “People will get creative and find other alternatives, which would essentially obsolete the tunnel. All these other alternatives would be very expensive and a big burden particularly on the UP. Also, on facilities south of the bridge, for instance more than 40% of the fuel used at the Detroit Metro Airport arrives there via the Line 5 pipe across the strait. Nobody should think this just effects the Upper Peninsula.”

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