House Approves Rep. Kowall Bills Streamlining Approval for State-Funded Construction Projects
The Michigan House today approved legislation sponsored by state Rep. Eileen Kowall that will streamline process colleges, universities and state agencies go through in order to receive state funding for construction projects.
The current process requires approval by the Legislature to fund the project and also later requires an additional vote to release the funds after construction is complete. House Bill 5830 eliminates a step, allowing for construction approval and payment authorization to occur at the same time.
"Our current Capital outlay process is out-of-date and requires unnecessary steps in order to complete construction projects," said Kowall, R-White Lake Township. "These reforms will streamline the process to help our universities complete their projects faster and not have to wait on redundant legislative action."
House Bill 5831 makes reforms to the current process to establish more clear-cut policies and fiscal safeguards for the state. These reforms include requiring an annual of state owned and leased office space, requiring universities to submit five-year plans on an annual basis detailing potential construction and capital outlay needs, and putting safeguards in place for terminating projects if authorization or construction does not occur within the allotted timeframe.
"I'm also proud that this legislation creates safeguards to help us keep better track of state leased and owned office space," Kowall said. "We have made great strides in creating a more efficient and effective government and these reforms ensure we stay on that same path and use every taxpayer dollar wisely."
The bills now head to the Senate for consideration.