Budget Battles Show Disagreement Over Priorities

By: Brian Johnson Email
By: Brian Johnson Email

Thursday the governor was recognized for his work to expand Medicaid coverage.

"Between healthy kids dental and medicaid expansion we can do a lot of things to make Michiganders healthier," said Governor Snyder.

It's one thing democrats are grateful for.

"I am glad the governor felt that way. I hope that he roles up his sleeves and comes in and starts working the legislature so that we can get the votes to ]expand medicaid]," said Senator Gretchen Whitmer, the Senate Minority Leader.

But there are many areas of disagreement in the proposed state budget, including funding for transportation, emergency financial managers, and what an expansion of medicaid might look like.

"That's part of the legislative process. We are separate branches of government they may have some different ideas and it looks like they may come forward with some of these ideas relatively soon and that's fine. Let's get them on the table. Let's talk and let's get something done," said the Governor.

The state budget remains in limbo, with less time to reach the June 1 deadline.

"We are facing a situation where we may have to answer some of the larger questions, some of the long term solutions for transportation some the issues on medicaid reform may have to wait until after the budget is done," said Ari Adler the spokesman for the speaker of the House.

Essentially, if the parties can't agree, they will set those topics aside and move forward with the budget anyway if they are going to meet the deadline.

Currently each side has firm reasons of why it opposes different pieces of the budget.

"What we cannot support as democrats is any proposal to continue to pile up on higher and higher financial burdens are middle class folks in the forms of higher taxes and fees,"said Rep Tim Greimel, the democratic minority leader in the House.

The governor is asking democrats to come forward with a public plan, if they don't like this proposals.

The budget was done by June first, for the past two years. That helped school districts and others plan on how much money they could expect from the state, but the budget doesn't have to be done until the end of September.

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