Snyder Porposes New Spending for better water quality, sewer upgrades

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan — Gov. Rick Snyder is asking legislators to approve more than $100 million to protect and restore Michigan’s waters through measures ranging from beach monitoring to upgrading sewage infrastructure, aides said Friday.

The fiscal 2015 budget Snyder presented this month heralds a yearlong emphasis on water — recognizing its importance to economic development and the advantage that Michigan’s vast aquatic resources provide over competing states, said Dan Wyant, director of the Department of Environmental Quality.

“Water will be the key reason why people will come to Michigan to live, work and play,” he said. “It’s going to be a catalyst for new technology and job creation.”

The administration’s “water strategy” will be released this spring that will lay out broad goals and strategies for achieving them over the next 30 years, Office of the Great Lakes director Jon Allan said. It will deal with long-standing issues such as invasive species, toxic pollution, large-scale water withdrawals for uses such as irrigation and manufacturing, and conflicts between users.

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