By Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network
LANSING, MI – The state House passed a state police budget that would restore the jobs of about half the state troopers who were laid off because of budget cuts. The bill had been stagnant since June.
While the lawmakers all agreed it would be good to fund those jobs, the debate quickly turned to the new, empty state police headquarters in Lansing.
Many Republicans would like to sell the building because they say it's too small and too expensive.
State Representative Rick Jones.
"Anybody that supports this building should be ashamed when they have to cut K-12 or they have to cut revenue sharing, because this isn't just about troopers, my friends. This is about public safety, it's about revenue sharing and K-12," he says. "This is a waste, a waste of our taxpayers' money."
But Democrats say the building is better than the one the state police currently occupy, and the state needs to make good on an obligation to provide new headquarters.