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Legislature sends K-12 budgets to Whitmer

Flickr User Steven Brewer

The Legislature has sent a K-through-12 schools budget to Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The bill was adopted with the support of Republicans and Democrats. But the budget has a lot less money then what the governor’s’ recommended for special education and at-risk students.

“While the school aid budget passed by the Legislature includes some additional funding, it is still nowhere near what the governor proposed in her executive budget, and far short of what our children deserve,” the governor’s press secretary, Tiffany Brown, said in a statement.

After the vote, House Speaker Lee Chatfield (R-Levering) said it was time to adopt this budget and move on:

“I’ve been saying since Day One that we cannot be like Washington here in this town, and what we just did is a bipartisan product to give our schools the budget that they deserve. We need to keep working with anyone and everyone that’s willing to negotiate with us.”

Governor Whitmer, a Democrat, can use her authority to veto line items in the K-through-12 budget. But Republican leaders are betting she won’t. That’s because the state’s new fiscal year begins on October first. GOP leaders say the rest of the budget will be delivered to the governor’s desk next week.

“We’ve got to run government,” said Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake).

GOP leaders say they will deliver the rest of the budget to Whitmer’s desk next week, even though negotiations have stalled.

Rick Pluta is the Capitol Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He is heard daily on WCMU's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.