LANSING (AP) – Even though Republicans largely have come out against Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s proposed 2 percent tax on services, they set it up for a possible vote in the GOP-controlled Senate next week.

Majority Leader Mike Bishop decided yesterday to discharge the measure and bring it to the full Senate because he felt Democrats broke an agreement to keep details of negotiations secret until a deal was reached.

The Rochester Republican said he’s bringing up the tax plan in the GOP-controlled Senate – where it’s almost sure to fail – because the House has failed to act, even though Democrats hold the majority there.

“You’ve got the governor’s office and you’ve got an entire chamber of this Legislature and nothing has been done to move that plan forward,” he said. “Why? Because you don’t have the votes.”

Democrats leveled similar charges as the two sides wrangled over how best to address the $900 million shortfall in the current budget.

Minority Leader Mark Schauer (D-Battle Creek) said Republicans say they want to make up the entire shortfall with cuts, but won’t say publicly what those spending decreases should be. He heard Republicans may propose cutting the payments that communities get from the state for police, fire and other services by 20 percent, as well as reducing aid to K-12 schools.

“It could have devastating impacts on our communities,” Schauer said. “I don’t think they’ve got the votes for it. … That’s why they’ve not been willing to put their plan on the table.”

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.