Senate approves Walker amendment to keep northern Michigan welcome centers open
Thursday, November 10, 2011
LANSING--A budget amendment that will restore funding to keep welcome centers open every day in three northern Michigan cities passed out of the Senate on Wednesday, said sponsor Sen. Howard Walker.
Walker’s change to House Bill 5014 allocates $200,000 to keep the welcome centers in Sault Ste. Marie, St. Ignace and Mackinaw City open seven days a week.
“I’m very happy I was able to secure this funding for our northern Michigan welcome centers. I have heard from citizens and businesses alike who don’t understand the decision to not have them open every day, especially when we are spending millions to market Michigan through the Pure Michigan campaign,” said Walker, R-Traverse City. “In St. Ignace alone, the welcome center served more than 400,000 people last year. These centers are vital to the region’s economy.”
Since early this fall, the Michigan Department of Transportation has closed the welcome centers two days a week. Walker’s amendment will enable the centers to stay open at least eight hours a day every day of the week.
HB 5014 now heads to the Michigan House of Representatives for further consideration.
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