With spring break approaching, what have Michigan lawmakers accomplished?

Mar 19, 2013

State lawmakers are beginning to wrap up their work for this session before they head out for their Spring recess.

It seems it’s as good a time as any to review what they have (and haven’t) accomplished since the beginning of the New Year.

Governor Snyder  has not been getting a whole lot of love from fellow Republicans. He announced he will take federal money to expand Medicaid rolls in the state.

But Republicans aren’t happy with this. They say they want Medicaid “reform” in exchange for their support.  Is Snyder going to be willing to make this type of deal? After all, he likes to say he doesn’t engage in ‘horse-trading.’

Meanwhile, Governor Snyder signed the Blue Cross/Blue Shield bills into law on Monday. He vetoed the law originally, last year, after it was passed in the lame-duck session of the legislature with measures having to do with abortions that he didn’t like.

And, something we’ve talked a lot about here on Stateside: the creation of a health care exchange mandated under the Affordable Health Care Act.

Michigan will be a hybrid, run between the state and federal government. At first, it was the state House that was dragging its feet. Now, Republican state Senators are stalling on the creation.

Aside from health care and health issues. Transportation funding has been widely talked about in Lansing. Governor Snyder is pushing for at least a billion dollars in additional funding each year to fix Michigan’s crumbling roads and bridges.

Lots of ideas for revenue have been bandied about increasing the gas tax, increase vehicle registration fees, increasing tax on services, but nothing seems to stick.

Is this just déjà vu all over again? The Governor originally proposed more money for roads in 2011 and nothing came from it.

Can we assume something will get passed in terms of road-funding? Or will we see trades and compromises between various factions and parties to get something accomplished?

Rick Pluta, Lansing Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network was here with us to provide insight as we rounded up the session and to point our attention toward issues on the horizon.

To hear the whole story, click the link above.