Cavanagh banner

Dear neighbor, 

It’s been a busy but exciting few weeks in Lansing, with major progress being made in the state budget process! I wanted to give you an update on everything the Michigan Legislature has been working on! 

So far, all Appropriations subcommittees have finalized and reported out their respective budgets, voted them out of full Appropriations committee, and have sent them to the Senate floor for a vote this week!  

But there’s still a long way to go—once the budget is passed by the Senate, we will work with our colleagues in the House of Representatives to finalize it before sending it to the Governor for her signature.  

As the Chair of the LEO, LARA and DIFS subcommittees, as well as a member of the DHHS, PreK-12 and full Appropriations Committee, I have been deeply involved in crafting each budget and am extremely proud of the work Senate Democrats have done so far.  

We are working hard to fund the priorities across Michigan that bring the greatest benefit to our communities and set our state up for success for years to come.  

Highlights of the budget are below! 


Labor and Economic Development (Chair) 

Labor Economic Opportunity Budget
  • Investments in economic development that prioritize our workers, communities, environment, small businesses and more!  
  • Increased funding for MI Reconnect, a program that increases access to affordable education. 
  • Investment in adult literacy programs that provide learning opportunities, from high school equivalency, digital literacy, and obtaining a driver’s license to financial literacy and ESL supports.  
  • Increased investment in the Tri-Share Program, a collaboration that leverages both state and business funds to help make childcare affordable for working families.  
  • Creation of the Michigan Partnership Initiative grant program, creating opportunities for transformational investments addressing talent attraction, arts/culture initiatives, infrastructure, housing access, small businesses, and non-profit development. 
  • Infrastructure Grants to help fund public infrastructure needs. 
  • Grants for small business, startup and microbusiness enterprise resiliency and supports 
  • Creation of the New Michigander Fund, providing support programs that assist immigrants, refugees, and migrants with legal services, housing and community outreach initiatives. 
  • Funding for our firefighters for health screenings and equipment purchases. 


PreK-12 (member) 

Pre K-12 Education Budget
  • The highest ever per-pupil foundation allowance at $9700, an increase of 6% with a weighted formula for those schools in greatest needs. 
  • Free school breakfast and lunches for public school students. 
  • Creation of MI Kids Back on Track, which will provide funding for tutoring and intervention for at-risk students.  
  • Healthy school grants to address immediate health and safety infrastructure needs in our schools. 
  • Funding for universal Pre-K across the state with expansion of the Great Start Readiness Program to 5-days a week and full day opportunities  
  • Investments in school mental health and safety initiatives 
  • Funding for MI After School Partnership Program supporting access to before-and-after school programs and summer learning opportunities for students. 
  • Retention and retainment programs for our teachers including student loan forgiveness. 
  • 100% reimbursement rate for our special needs students  

Department of Health and Human Services (member)

DHHS Services Budget
  • Wage increases for direct care workers. 
  • Expansion of coverage for the Children’s Special Health Care program.  
  • Increase in funding for the food banks to provide additional fresh food to low-income residents.  
  • Supports for our first responder mental health and safety. 
  • Permanent supportive housing program to help currently homeless individuals and those who need additional services.  
  • Investments in recovery programs to help those with Substance Use Disorder.  
  • Expansion of Medicaid access and equitability. 
  • Investments for Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies program from Medicaid expansion, prenatal supports, strengthens hospital maternal health, and more pregnancy initiatives.  
  • Childcare, juvenile, and child welfare investments.  
  • Funding for our local health programs, poverty supports, prevention programs, non-profits, and so much more!  

Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (Chair) 

  • Increased access to licensed childcare centers. 
  • Increased support for court appointed attorneys.  
  • Creation of a state-owned cannabis testing facility. 
  • Investments for childcare licensing background checks. 
Department of Insurance and Financial Services (Chair) 
  • Investments in consumer services and protection. 
  • Funding for improvements in information and technology services. 
  • Increased transparency for the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association. 
Michigan Department of Education 
  • Child development and childcare investments. 
  • Funding to develop a professional development toolkit for teaching expansive American History. 
  • School board member training. 
Michigan Department of Transportation  
  • Increased funding for highway and road maintenance. 
  • Funding for critical infrastructure projects. 
  • Investments in high-speed rail and regional transit. 
Higher Education and Community Colleges 
  • Ongoing operations increase of 6%. 
  • MI Achievement Scholarship funding increase to help students complete degrees or certificate programs.  
  • Creation of Higher Ed Council for colleges and universities to coordinate best practices statewide. 
  • Critical incident mapping to allow police, fire, or EMS to accurately share information quickly and efficiently in times of emergency.
Military and Veterans Affairs 
  • Increased supports for Veteran Homes. 
  • Funding for gun violence prevention. 
  • Investments in veteran suicide prevention to help improve the health and well-being of our veterans.  
Department of Natural Resources 
  • Supports in maintenance, operations, and infrastructure for our Parks and Trails  
  • Funding for state park projects, including our local Belle Isle State Park 
Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy 
  • Investments for lead service line replacement in Michigan’s poorest communities. 
  • Creation of the Environmental Justice Contaminated Site Clean Up Fund. 
Michigan State Police 
  • New requirement for continuing education for law enforcement officers.  
  • Funding for mobile units to increase capacity to collect information on gun crimes. 
  • Creation of Juvenile Justice Division at the MI State Court Administrative Office. 
  • Funding to support additional juvenile life resentencing hearings. 
  • Investments in MI Alliance Against Hate Crimes. 
  • Increased funding for Job Court Programs.  
Department of Corrections 
  • Increased funding for healthcare and medication assisted treatment. 
  • Bachelor’s Degree pilot program at Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility. 
  • Funding for initiatives for returning citizens, including housing, job placement, social supports, peer mentoring, behavioral health support, and life skills. 
General Government 
  • Support for those wrongfully convicted.  
  • Investments for financially distressed cities, villages, and townships.  
  • Support for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion research. 
  • Disability rights and digital access supports. 
  • Increase of 10% for revenue sharing for local governments. 
  • Funding for attainable workforce housing programs. 

Mary Cavanagh
State Senator
District 6