Tax Increase, Budget Deal Move A Step Closer

By: Tony Tagliavia Email
By: Tony Tagliavia Email

Michigan House members went home for the night Monday after House Speaker Andy Dillon told reporters he has some Republican votes to pass a tax increase.

So far only Democrats have supported the idea. They say they want Republicans on board so it can get support in the Republican-controlled Senate.

The plan -- which could include an income tax increase and a new sales tax on services -- has not been put to a vote yet.

"We need to meet with them and find out when they're ready," Dillon (D-Redford Twp.) told News 10.

The speaker says both Democrats and Republicans in the House are going to want some indication that the Senate will consider a tax increase before those House members vote to raise taxes. It's a vote that could upset their constituents and spark recalls in some cases.

The Senate took its own action Monday, passing a so-called continuation budget giving the state an extra 30 days to figure out its finances beyond the October 1st deadline.

Democrats called it irresponsible, but Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop says it's necessary.

"Even if we had a deal in place today, we don't have time to get it done," Bishop (R-Rochester) said.

The vote came hours after Gov. Jennifer Granholm said she'd veto any extension of current spending levels.

"Kicking the can down the road for three more months to allow will not solve our problems," the governor said. "It will just push it further down the road."

So with the two separate houses taking seemingly separate actions where do we stand? The Senate could vote on budget-balancing plans this week as the House pushes forward with the speaker's deal.

Whichever takes action first will send the plan to the other chamber.

But all indications are that some kind of tax increase will be part of the solution.


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