GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — With the relatively slow month of August almost over, there is considerable talk in Lansing about what may happen next with roads.
The House adjourned on Aug. 19 without approving a plan to provide more funding to road repair as Republican lawmakers faced opposition from Democrats and Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican. It’s not clear what will happen when legislators return to the Capitol after Labor Day.
But another issue that has been taking up a lot of the oxygen in the room is the scandal involving state Reps. Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat. They are accused of using taxpayer-funded resources to cover up an affair, and an investigation into the pair revealed “troubling evidence of misconduct,” the speaker of the House said last week.
At least some think that the Courser-Gamrat situation is getting in the way of coming up with a viable roads deal.
“It certainly is an unfortunate distraction right now,” House Democratic Leader Tim Greimel said. “The whole thing is unfortunate in a lot of ways. It’s unfortunate for the dignity of the House. It’s unfortunate taxpayers because of these allegations of misuse of public resources. And it’s very unfortunate for the children of the representatives directly involved because it must be a very difficult time for the family.”
“But it’s also very unfortunate in that it is a distraction, and I think most people in the state understand that this is not where we need to be focused,” the representative from Auburn Hills continued. “We need to focus on making sure we’re getting the work of the state done, most importantly getting roads done.”
On this Aug. 30, 2015 episode of “To The Point,” Greimel discusses why he thinks Lansing needs to quit fixating on one issue and start thinking seriously about another when legislators reconvene.