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Gov. Whitmer expected to sign budget bills, avoid partial government shutdown

Michigan Capitol Building
Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0
Another snow day is in store for the Michigan legislature

All state employees are expected to show up for work Tuesday. That’s because Governor Gretchen Whitmer is expected to sign budget bills Monday and avert a partial shutdown of state government at midnight.

The Democratic governor pressed the Legislature’s GOP majorities to increase the gas tax and put more money toward roads and schools. Republicans said no and sent her budget bills last week to sign or veto by Monday. The standoff led the Whitmer administration to notify state employees that layoffs could be on the way.

Kurt Weiss is with the state budget office. He says state employees have been told to show up for work.

“Basically told them the temporary layoff we initiated a week or so ago has been rescinded, and they should report to work on Tuesday as if it were a normal workday,” he says. “You should treat it as business as usual for Tuesday, October 1.”

Weiss says the governor can use the line-item veto and other powers to re-start the bargaining.

“There are a number of things we can do to try and get these budgets back into a position where we can bargain and negotiate a better budget,” he says.

Republicans expect line-item vetoes from the Democratic governor, but they’re waiting to see what she does before deciding their next moves. It’s normal for the Legislature to adopt mid-year budget adjustments based on emerging needs and changes in revenue.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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