LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Jon Bumstead celebrated a $60 million legislative transfer from the SOAR fund for the Southeast Regional Force Main project in Muskegon County that was approved by the House Appropriations Committee in the final hours of the 101st Legislature on Wednesday evening.
The project will benefit the city of Coopersville, Polkton Township, Ravenna Township, and the village of Ravenna, providing wastewater transport and disposal services for agriculture businesses and homes in the region, and to provide increased wastewater removal capacity.
“For years, the lack of a modern wastewater pipeline has hampered agricultural businesses throughout Muskegon County and the greater West Michigan region from meeting their full potential and, perhaps worse, the situation has been a significant barrier to growth,” said Sen. Jon Bumstead, R-North Muskegon. “I am happy to see we were able to get the final approval needed for this project to move forward. This is a big deal for West Michigan families and businesses alike.”
Earlier this year, the Michigan Strategic Fund approved the use of SOAR funds for this project. Bumstead, who serves as vice chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, played a fundamental role in passing a legislative fund transfer in the Senate for the Southeast Regional Force Main project. After the transfer passed the Senate, Bumstead mobilized support to finally push this project past the finish line in the House. With last night’s final legislative approval, the project can now begin to move forward.
Currently, the wastewater problem is causing concerns that some farms will become unable to meet environmental safety standards set by the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, which may cause them to go out of business.
According to the Michigan Strategic Fund, companies including fairlife, Continental Dairy, DeVries Meats, Applegate Dairy, and Swanson Pickle, collectively plan to invest at least $187 million and create 145 jobs upon completion of the project.
“This pipeline project will help provide a lasting future for agriculture in our region and state, as well as continued success for businesses and families in West Michigan,” Bumstead said.