Budget Progress

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Steady progress is being made on the new state budget as all sides declare cooperation is the word of the day.

Hoping to wrap-up the new $10 billion state budget, key negotiators report progress on deciding where your tax dollars will go. "It's not soup, but it will be next week," predicted the chair of the senate budget panel.

Still unresolved is passage of the governor's $37 million liquor tax, which is given less than a 50-50 chance of passage by the top republican in the state senate. Republicans also want the governor to embrace a higher state tax on casinos in Detroit. The governor's budget director confirms that is still on the table, but the governor won't say yes unless other democrats join her, and so far, they have not.

The talks are "very productive" says GOP leader Ken Sikkema, who adds a "handful of issues" remain to be solved before lawmakers can leave for the summer.