A news service for the people of Michigan from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy

With an all Republican-controlled legislature, a Republican governor and media stories about schools and other state programs facing cuts, most people may not be aware the state’s 2012-13 budget will be about $1.6 billion larger than last year.

The initial appropriations for the 2012-13 budget will be $49 billion, slightly more than this year’s $47.4 billion.

The state dollars in the total budget increased from $28.1 billion this year to $29.1 billion in 2012-13. And the School Aid Fund, which funds K-12 Public Schools, will increase from $11 billion in 2011-12 to $11.2 billion in 2012-13.

"Michigan government will spend more year after year just on its auto-pilot policies, even without lobbyists trying to squeeze taxpayers for more," said James Hohman, a fiscal policy analyst for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

One of the biggest increases in the 2012-13 budget is Medicaid, Hohman said. The Department of Health and Human Services saw its budget for 2012-13 increase by $740 million.

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Commentary: School Funding at All-Time High