Dillon: "Close" To A Budget

By: Lauren Zakalik Email
By: Lauren Zakalik Email
The Speaker of the House says the real hold-up is deciding what to do in 2010-2011.

unclaimed money.

"On the '09-'10 budget, we're pretty close," says House Speaker Andy Dillon, (D) Redford.

But with less than 30 days until that budget needs to be finalized, Dillon telling us Tuesday it's the 2010/2011 budget that has things moving so slow.

"All of us want to do a two-year solution, not a one-year solution. That's the challenge before us," he says.

Dillon says the issue is that stimulus dollars-- and stimulus rules-- expire mid-way through the 2010/2011 budget year, so the House, Senate and Governor are trying to come to a middle ground as to what could be cut when that happens.

Right now, stimulus rules prohibit cuts to areas like K-12 funding if the state is to receive funds.

"Right now, the division I see between us now is scholarships-- provinding them going forward, local revenue sharing cuts, and DCH (the Department of Community Health)," Dillon says.

Proposed cuts to Michigan's Promise Scholarships are a big sticking point for Dillon too, he says.

"I can't support zero scholarships," he says, referring to the Senate budget plan that eliminates the scholarship. "The path out is through higher education for citizens."

Dillon says he's open to the idea of pro-rating the scholarships for Michigan college students, reducing them, or giving them on a need-only basis-- for which each family's income would be tested.

Dillon also says it's still unclear if we can pass a budget with all cuts and no tax increases.

"I think this Thursday if we can figure out a way to close the gap on 2010/2011, you'll start seeing progress quickly," he says.

Dillon says it's too early to consider a continuation budget, which would give the state extra time to pass a balanced plan.

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  • by Anonymous on Sep 2, 2009 at 10:49 AM
    Do the tough job of making major cuts on all programs. I want to see the state get rid of the either the income tax, small business tax, property tax or sales tax.
  • by Anonymous on Sep 2, 2009 at 07:58 AM
    Start doing the cuts now so we can have a surplus in a few years. I would like to see some of special projects be considered after the state has a surplus for one year of spending.
  • by Anonymous on Sep 2, 2009 at 07:03 AM
    Just make sure the upper class,higher incomes pay out nothing more than they are now.Or give them more tax breaks.Don't work harder to get jobs into mich.Continue to cut throats of the poor,making the now thousands jobless suffer.Now that many have NO jobs they aren't worth a thing.Can't get tax money from them.Even though they paid it in for years.Don't worry about children being homeless and many getting sick,They can spread illness to many.oh well.Don't worry about crime rising as many turn into wild animals because they have been pushed to their limits.scared,hungry,cold and so on.Cut programs to the food banks.Food isn't important.Keep giving raises to the upper government people.They do so much good.They HAVE TO HAVE the BEST.The list goes on.This is the way some comments sounded on different stories throughout this budget thing.Tired of taking care of the poor?Who are the poor,why are they poor?does it say on our paychecks welfare taxes or do we assume so much.Lead to think so?
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