state budget

Many years ago, I used to write about the federal budget when it was released in Washington. Ronald Reagan was president then, and Democrats controlled the House of Representatives. The moment the massive document was released, Speaker Tip O’Neill would proclaim it dead on arrival.  And then the negotiating began.

This week, Jack and Emily discuss what we can expect from Governor Rick Snyder’s budget address later this morning as well as some high points from Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan’s State of the City address last night.

taxcredits.net

Governor Snyder is set to deliver his budget proposal for the next fiscal year tomorrow morning in Lansing. The just released Michigan Radio/Public Sector Consultants poll takes a look at where the voters of Michigan would like to see the state invest.

Budget tiles
Simon Cunningham / Flickr

A Michigan Radio/Public Sector Consultants poll of 600 likely voters in Michigan found that if they were making today's tough budget decisions, a majority would invest more in job creation, and most would make cuts to prisons.

The findings were released today - a day before Governor Snyder is expected to announce where he thinks money in the state budget should be spent, and where it should be cut.

michigan.gov

Governor Snyder will present his recommended budget for 2015-2016 on Wednesday morning.

Detroit Free Press Lansing reporter Paul Egan wrote an article about the anticipated budget.

The state's general fund, he said, is like the state’s “checking account.” For the current 2015 fiscal year, the state has a $325 million deficit. For the 2016 fiscal year – the year for which Snyder will present his recommended budget on Wednesday – a $532 million deficit is expected.

Michigan's Capitol.
Graham Davis / flickr

The state of Michigan is facing a revenue shortfall, and cuts will have to be made, but one state senator says education is not on the chopping block.

More from the Associated Press:

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Schoolchildren and others will be impacted when Michigan's next state budget starts in about three months.

Gov. Rick Snyder plans to finish signing the $53.2 billion spending plan as early as Monday. It affects many corners of Michigan life - from how much it costs to attend college to increased arts funding and how many state troopers patrol the highways.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan lawmakers are tackling some hefty issues like fuel taxes, Detroit's bankruptcy and the minimum wage in the last weeks before their summer break.

They're also trying to finalize Michigan's next spending plan.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

LANSING – Economists are projecting that the state of Michigan will collect about $873 million less in revenue this budget year and next than was projected earlier in the year.

Tuesday's estimate is one of three that Gov. Rick Snyder's administration and budget experts will use to reach a consensus later in the week. But it's not good news for lawmakers hoping to finalize the next budget in coming weeks.

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan legislative budget experts say state government is taking in hundreds of millions of dollars more than expected eight months ago.

A report released Tuesday from the House Fiscal Agency in Lansing estimates Michigan collected $433 million more than projected in the last budget year and will collect about $327 million more this year.

Snyder officials to meet with Michigan residents

May 20, 2013
michigan.gov

Officials from Republican Gov. Rick Snyder's administration are planning to travel across the state this week to take suggestions and answer questions from Michigan residents.

Representatives from the Office of Constituent Services will visit locations in Washtenaw, Livingston, Ingham, Shiawassee, Clinton and Ionia counties on May 23 and 24.

Snyder's office says topics that are open for discussion include the state budget and opportunities for getting involved in state government.

The state budget director says credit agencies won’t upgrade Michigan’s rating because of proposals on the November ballot.

John Nixon today spoke alongside opponents of Proposal Five. It would require a statewide vote or two-thirds majorities of the Legislature to approve a tax increase.

But Nixon said all the initiatives cast doubt about the state’s economic future.

Photo courtesy of the Snyder Administration

The $48 billion spending plan for the budget year that starts Oct. 1 is about to be signed into law. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has scheduled a bill-signing ceremony for Tuesday afternoon at the Romney Building across from the Capitol.

The package includes a small cut in individual income taxes, twice as much money for film credits, a slight increase in education funding and a down payment on school employees' health care costs in retirement.

The Republican-controlled House and Senate passed the budget bills three weeks ago. Snyder has the right to veto portions of the bills.

Democrats have criticized the GOP budget plan for not spending more on education.

Every Thursday we talk Michigan politics with Ken Sikkema, former Senate Majority Leader and Senior Policy Fellow at Public Sector Consultants, and Susan Demas, political analyst for Michigan Information and Research Service.

The Snyder Administration and the legislature are working to complete work on the state budget, and it sounds like they’ve made some progress towards a final deal.

There is something to be said for one party controlling both the executive and legislative branches of government. This year, for the second year in a row, the state budget will apparently be passed by the beginning of June. That’s a big change from a few years ago.

Twice during the Granholm years, the parties were still squabbling over the books when the fiscal year expired at the end of September. And bad last-minute choices were made.

Photo courtesy of Gov Snyder's office

Governor Snyder has said the state needs to do more to attract immigrants, and get them to stay once they’re here.

In his recent budget proposal, Governor Snyder calls for the creation of a Cultural Ambassador program to attract and welcome immigrants to the state, which is similar to a program he helped create when he worked at Ann Arbor SPARK.

Photo courtesy of the Snyder administration

Governor Rick Snyder calls for a slight boost in spending in his budget proposal for the coming fiscal year – with more money for police, schools, and universities. The governor says this year’s spending plan is built on tough decisions made last year.

Snyder was flanked by Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley and Budget Director John Nixon as he took a seat in front of a packed house. He presented his budget plans to a joint meeting of the House and Senate appropriations committees. The governor started out with a short history lesson, reminding lawmakers of how things have changed since his budget presentation from a year ago. “It was a mess,” Calley said.

In 2011, the governor called for taxing pensions; taking $400 million dollars from the School Aid Fund to help pay for universities –  which still saw a cut in funding – and concessions from public employees. “We had to address a billion and a half dollar deficit. We addressed that. We had to ask for shared sacrifice from many people, a lot of difficult decisions and I appreciate a lot of understanding by a lot of people,” Snyder said.

This year, the economy has improved, and so has revenue. The governor called for modest increases to money for schools and universities – much of it linked to improving student performance. Local governments could also see more if they find ways to become more efficient.

Governor Rick Snyder's website

Governor Rick Snyder spoke to Michigan Radio’s Jennifer White about his budget proposal for fiscal year 2013.

In the proposal are some funding increases for education, public safety and infrastructure.

Photo courtesy of the Snyder administration

Governor Snyder will present his budget proposal for the next fiscal year this morning at the state Capitol.

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley told Michigan Public Radio Network’s Laura Weber that he expects budget negotiations will go more smoothly this year than in recent years. ‘The reason why last year’s budget was difficult is because it actually did fix the structural problems that had plagued us for so long. And because we did all the hard work last year, it makes movement in a more positive direction where we can all grow and invest together,” Calley explained.

Details of the Governor's budget have started to leak out and here's what we know so far:

From the Detroit News:

Gov. Rick Snyder will propose investing an additional $45 million in public safety as part of his 2013 budget proposal... Snyder noted in his State of the State address in January that Michigan has four cities — Detroit, Flint, Pontiac and Saginaw — that regularly turn up on the nation's Top 10 list of most violent cities. The governor has promised to roll out a detailed crime-fighting strategy in a Special Message to the Legislature on Public Safety in March.

From the Associated Press:

A projected budget surplus means an estimated 37,000 state of Michigan workers represented by unions won't have to take furlough days this fiscal year. The unionized workers had been expected to take up to four furlough days each in the fiscal year that ends September 30th. The furlough days were announced last fall because unions did not reach an agreement on concessions with Governor Rick Snyder's administration.

Later in the day, the Governor will hold a virtual town hall meeting to discuss his budget. The AP reports:

Snyder was so happy with how his town hall meeting on Facebook went after last month's State of the State address that he's holding another one. This time the governor will take residents' questions just after he presents his 2012-13 budget proposal to lawmakers on Thursday. Viewers can watch the hour-long town hall meeting beginning at 6:30 p.m. on the Rick Snyder for Michigan Facebook page.

You can submit questions at online at www.michigan.gov/townhall. Or, post questions on the Governor’s facebook page.

When the Legislature returns to the state Capitol next week, there will be another item added to its to-do list. That is: coming up with millions of dollars to fill a budget gap created by the state Supreme Court decision on Michigan’s new pension tax. The court upheld the tax on pensions, but said denying a tax break to some higher-earners effectively created a graduated income tax.

A graduated income tax is not allowed under the state constitution. That part of the decision also blew a $60 million hole in the state budget. Sixty million dollars is a small part of a general fund budget that exceeds $8 billion.

But it is an amount the governor and the Legislature will need to make up to meet their obligation under the state constitution to have a balanced budget. One possibility would be to use a projected surplus from last year’s budget to fill the gap. That number becomes official in January. But it appears the surplus will be somewhere near $400 million.

Lawmakers are already fighting over what to do with that money. Democrats say it should be used to restore some budget cuts to schools. Republicans say it should go into the state’s “rainy day” savings fund, or to pay down debt.

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