Mich. House OKs version of higher education budget

Lansing, MI – Lansing, MI (AP)

The Michigan House has passed a budget bill that would replace a proposed 3% funding cut to public universities with money from the federal stimulus package.

The higher education budget was passed by a 89-21 vote Thursday as the Democratic-led chamber began approving bills for the fiscal year that starts in October.

The measure now goes to the Republican-led Senate.

Final budget bills could look much different than the early versions passed Thursday.

The state faces a growing budget deficit of at least $1.5 billion next fiscal year and there could be disagreements over how much federal stimulus money should be used to fill the holes.

The House passed other budgets Thursday including ones for community colleges and prisons.