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Tue October 6, 2009
Governor pressing lawmakers to support revenue
By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network
LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm is lobbying lawmakers to approve new revenue to backfill big budget cuts in bills sent to her last week by the Legislature. The governor says she will veto many parts of those budgets if lawmakers don't approve more revenue.
The governor says this does not violate her pledge to not seek new taxes after the 2007 income tax increase. That's because these revenues would come from narrow, targeted groups, and not from most taxpayers.
She supports taxes on tobacco and doctors, reducing tax breaks for businesses and working poor families, and selling pricey liquor licenses to bars that want to stay open until 4 AM. That money would save the Michigan Promise scholarship from elimination and shield Medicaid, schools, and local governments from bigger cuts.
"So this is all about finding the least-painful types of revenues to fund the priorities for Michigan," she says. "This is about Michigan's future."
The governor says she hopes a deal can be reached between the House and the Senate this week. Republican leaders say they remain opposed to using new revenue to balance the budget.