Auchter's Art: A win-win. Just don't ask questions.
First, credit where credit is due: the Michigan Legislature and the Whitmer administration came together to create a budget for next year that does in fact significantly increase funding for child care in Michigan. As reported by Bridge Michigan:
The budget allocates $1.4 billion in federal COVID relief funds to help support child care providers, bring down costs and expand subsidies to another 105,000 Michigan families. The budget also includes $30 million for a one-time $1,000 bonus for child care staffers.
Of course it was relatively easy to do because of the boatload of federal funds. But still, they did it. And ahead of an October 1 default deadline. (Note to Mitch McConnell: This is how grown-ups work together to avoid financial defaults.)
So I don't want to seem ungrateful, but the self-congratulations from Whitmer, Shirkey, and the lot are a bit hard to take. Specifically because, as later noted in the Bridge Michigan article, Michigan currently helps families with child care costs less than almost any state. (When Mississippi has been kicking your butt, it's time for some soul searching.)
Here's hoping the 2022 budget is the start of a continued investment in supporting Michigan families and businesses, not a one-time bonus.
John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. His views are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management, or its license holder, the University of Michigan.