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Michigan Senate passes $465M budget bill to address COVID-19

The Senate passed Senate Bill 748 by a vote of 35-2.
Credit: AP
FILE - This Dec. 12, 2012, file photo shows the state capitol building in Lansing, Mich. Michigan's tax revenues this fiscal year will plummet between $3.1 billion and $3.6 billion below prior estimates due to the coronavirus pandemic, economists said Thursday, May 14, 2020, and are projected to fall billions of dollars short in the next budget year, too. The numbers were released ahead of a Friday meeting at which nonpartisan legislative experts and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's administration will try to get a handle on the budget outlook two months after the crisis hit the state. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate passed a $465 million budget bill Friday night to address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 

Senate Bill 748 provides $465 million in state and federal funding for Michigan health care workers combating the virus, increases testing capacity, makes the investments necessary to ensure vaccine distribution, and extends unemployment benefits through April 1, 2021. 

The Senate Republican relief plan includes:

  • $220 million to extend unemployment benefits until April 1, 2021;
  • $79.1 million to expand virus testing and vaccine distribution, including funds to ramp up testing of teachers;
  • $115.3 million to hospitals and nursing homes to address nursing shortages, including an extension of the pay increase for direct care workers;
  • $45 million in Employee Assistance Grants to restaurant and other workers laid off or furloughed; 
  • $63.5 million in Small Business Survival Grants and other assistance to help small businesses avoid permanent closure. 

The Senate passed Senate Bill 748 by a vote of 35-2.

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