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Stabenow introduces bill to create Great Lakes Authority

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Michigan U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow introduced a bill today to establish a Great Lakes Authority. It would identify at-risk communities in which to support economic growth and infrastructure needs.

Several counties in Michigan are not included in the seven other federal commissions authorized by congress. That means they're ineligible for certain federal programs and grant funds.

The goal of the Great Lakes Authority is to support overall economic development in distressed communities across the region by strengthening the manufacturing industry, supporting the development of public services, improving wastewater infrastructure and the expansion of seaport infrastructure among other projects.

Senator Stabenow, a co-sponsor of the legislation with Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), said in a written statement that the bill will “create an important partnership to give state and local governments the tools they need to create jobs, boost their economy, and transform communities.”

In its current form, Stabenow and Portman's bill would authorize $80 million in federal appropriations annually for the Great Lakes Authority.

The U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure committee advanced their version of the bill back in March.

Rick joined WCMU as a general assignment reporter in March 2022.