One possible way to trim $114 million from the state budget is through an eight-percent cut in state revenue sharing. Some local communities say that will affect public safety services.
In Lansing, the city's budget is right around $105 million. This year, the city is budgeting for between $500,000 and $1.5 million less than that, in case the state cuts revenue sharing in order to balance a $920 million budget deficit. Police and Fire chiefs say their departments will likely be effected. Both departments have more than 10 positions each left open after cuts in state revenue sharing earlier this year. Police Chief Mark Alley says 88-percent of the department's budget is staff, and he says he'll have to look at people if cuts are made.
But there is hope. City Council President Carol Wood says there is $8 million in the city's rainy day fund. If cuts are made, it will be enough to soften the blow, although she says it will be used as a last resort.
Not all local communities have large rainy day funds. Meridian Township says between six and eight fire and police positions will have to be eliminated if cuts are made. East Lansing already has five positions open.