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Politics & Government
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.

Michigan Legislature Begins Passing Final Budget Bills

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

The Republican-led Michigan Legislature has begun passing $44.7 billion in proposed spending as it works to complete the next state budget.

Lawmakers on Tuesday are giving final approval to more spending bills, days after they passed the K-12 budget. Talks with Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer broke down weeks ago, and it's uncertain to what extent she may veto some spending.

A sticking point is road funding.

Whitmer and Democrats oppose Republicans' planned use of $400 million in one-time general funds in the transportation budget — a routine practice in recent years, but one they say is a Band-Aid approach that tightens other spending that already is being squeezed by a past road-funding deal.

Republicans say using existing revenues prevents the need for Whitmer's proposed gas tax increase, which is dead.

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