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From our State Capitol in Lansing to the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, WKAR is committed to explaining how the actions of lawmakers are affecting Michiganders. Political and government reporter Abigail Censky leads this section. There are also stories from Capitol correspondents Cheyna Roth, Rick Pluta and the Associated Press. As the 2020 presidential race begins, look here for reports on the role Michigan will play in electing or re-electing the president.

Budget Action Expected In Michigan Legislature This Week

Income and sales tax revenues plummeted during the coronavirus pandemic. Now, the state faces a two-fold problem—how to avoid cuts before this fiscal year ends, and what to do about the projected shortfalls next year.
Reginald Hardwick
/
WKAR-MSU

Action on the state’s budget is expected to pick up this week.

The state Senate Appropriations committee will consider and possibly vote on multiple budgets – including for the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Those budgets moving through the Senate include large cuts to what Governor Gretchen Whitmer recommended in her proposed budget. Including to the state Attorney General’s budget.

“It was strictly to put those discretionary dollars that we have at our disposal toward things, for instance, like accelerating road funding,” said Amber McCann, spokeswoman for Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey.

Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield won’t say if he agrees with his Republican counterparts on that plan.

“Those conversations are going to be ongoing and we’re going to put forward our own proposal and reach a consensus with the Senate and the administration before the deadline of October first,” he said.

Lawmakers on House subcommittees like Agriculture and Judiciary plan to vote on their budgets this week.

Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County.
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