LANSING, Mich. (May 17) — Severe budget deficits have led the state of Michigan to freeze state grant expenditures for scrap tire abatement and other programs until Sept. 30, the end of its fiscal year.
The executive order still allows grant money for projects essential to public health, so the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is arguing for funding of 33 completed scrap tire abatement contracts worth about $3.8 million, according to Rhonda Zimmerman, head of the Solid Waste Management Office within the DEQ. She said the order came down in March.
The department hopes to get that money by summer, but had to defer eight other abatement projects worth about $590,000 till later in the fiscal year, and place on hold till next year a $500,000 program for scrap tire market development, Zimmerman said.
Michigan has about 11 million tires stockpiled within its borders, she said.