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Why don't YOU fix the state's budget woes?

The Center for Michigan wants you to play their game.
Image from the Center for Michigan's website
The Center for Michigan wants you to play their game.

Try your hand at fixing the state's budget problems.

The Center for Michigan has released an interactive state budget calculator - YOU Fix the Budget.

The idea is similar to the New York Times interactive budget calculator for the federal government.

You can start by adding $1.2 billion to the state's budget woes by cutting business taxes, or you can leave business taxes alone and deal with the current budget hole the Center estimates at $1.4 billion.

Once you start, your options are to cut, cut, cut (cuts to education, cuts general government, cuts to prison and police, cuts to the public workforce, and cuts to welfare and health care) - or - you could raise taxes.

So far, of the 300 or so people who have participated - raising the Beer Tax is the most popular option.

Here's how people have cut or taxed so far:

  1. 8.06% chose to raise the Beer Tax to 6 cents per bottle (wine goes to 3 cents per liter)
  2. 7.22% chose "prison sentencing reforms" - reducing the prison population
  3. 7.09% chose to extend Sales Taxes to personal services
  4. 6.88% chose to adopt Gov. Snyder's plan to cut funding for public universities
  5. 6.54% chose to adopt Gov. Snyder's plan for concessions from state workers
Mark Brush was the station's Digital Media Director. He succumbed to a year-long battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer, in March 2018. He was 49 years old.
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