In Michigan
6:20 pm
Wed October 13, 2010

Lansing debates how to spend the surplus

LANSING, MI –
Governor Granholm's proposal to use part of a projected budget surplus to fund the Pure Michigan ad campaign is drawing some heat in Lansing

AUDIO: The governor and tourism advocates say the Pure Michigan ad campaign creates jobs and is a net revenue maker for the state. And they argue Pure Michigan should have been better funded.

This is Republican state Representative Dave Hildenbrand.

"Yeah, but there's also great arguments that people can make about supporting our local communities through revenue sharing," he says.

Hildenbrand thinks the state should sit on the surplus and use it for the next budget cycle, or to pay back loans from the federal government. Other lawmakers say the money could be used to fund a Constitutional Convention if voters approve one in November. Meanwhile, school advocates say the money should be used to restore cuts in the School Aid Fund.

Bob Emerson is the state's budget director.

"I think caution would be best for everybody," he advises.

Nothing can be done with the money until lawmakers return to the state Capitol, which will most likely be after the elections.