Senate GOP: New plan would shrink and streamline state government


State Senate Republicans are rolling out a new plan they say will reduce the size of state government and make Michigan more business friendly.

Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta reports that GOP lawmakers intend to make the plan a part of budget negotiations.

Republicans put the final touches to the plan over the Legislature's two-week spring break. It would cap the number of state departments at 11. And it would put all the responsibility for issuing environmental, health, and business licenses in one Department of Business Assistance.

State Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop.

"The key is in Michigan we want to find ways streamline activity so we don't have all that waste and so businesses don't have to go through the process of dealing with multiple jurisdictions," he says.

Bishop says that would make Michigan more attractive to entrepreneurs. Bishop also says the Senate will vote this week on a proposal to persuade thousands of veteran teachers and other public employees to accept a retirement offer. It's a version of what Governor Granholm has proposed, but it is opposed by public employee unions and many Democrats.