Whitmer Hasn’t Abandoned 45-Cent Gas Tax Increase But Is ‘Desperate’ to Avoid Shutdown

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Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said on Monday that she is “desperate” to avoid a shutdown and is considering a stop gap budget measure if “good faith” negotiations are made concerning the budget to fix roads, according to a report from the AP.

Whitmer expressed concern about passing the state budget in time for the new fiscal year on October 1, due to a disagreement over a 45-cent gas tax raise. The revenue for the raise would be used to fund fixing Michigan roads.

“We have the worst roads in the country, and I am proposing a plan that will permanently fix our roads while keeping the costs fair for seniors and low-income families,” Whitmer said in a statement when the proposal was released. “I know this won’t be easy, but with one historic vote we can make the investments that are necessary to finally start fixing the damn roads.”

The state budget, proposed on March 5, recommends $60.2 billion and focuses on education, clean water and fixing Michigan’s roads.

Whitmer’s proposal includes three 15-cent gas tax increases spanning October 1, 2019 to October 1, 2020 for a total increase of 45 cents. This plan would generate $2.5 billion in increased revenue and would be used to repair Michigan roads. It also includes a tax break to lower-income families.

The Republican caucus in the Michigan House of Representatives opposes the tax increase, creating a standoff around Whitmer’s proposal and the increase.

“It’s troubling that [Whitmer] still has not abandoned her truly destructive 45-cent gas tax increase proposal,” said the Michigan GOP on Twitter.

The GOP cites concerns for working-class families and the economy as reasons for opposing the increase.

“It hurts the working poor and people living on fixed incomes,” the Michigan GOP tweeted. “Michigan could lose tens of thousands of jobs. The governor is ignoring the clear will of the people. Residents overwhelmingly don’t want a 45-cent gas tax hike.”

Whitmer criticized the legislative body for moving slowly with the budget.

“It’s been 150 days since we presented the Michigan budget, which means the Michigan legislature hasn’t presented a comprehensive budget solution in 150 days,” Whitmer tweeted on August 2.

Whitmer said she is confident a temporary budget will be passed, according to the AP.

The Michigan GOP announced that a representative will be holding a town hall about road repair funding next week.

Rep. Ann Bollin (R-Livingston) will be hosting the town hall along with House Transportation Committee Chair Jack O’Malley.

“The people of Livingston County expect results on roads,” Bollin said in a statement. “My colleagues and I have a proposal that invests record funding toward roads, without asking drivers to pay more at the pump. I look forward to sharing our ideas with you and welcome your input and questions.”

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Jordyn Pair is a reporter for Battleground State News and The Michigan Star. Follow her on Twitter at @JordynPair. Email her at [email protected]
Photo “Gretchen Whitmer” by Gretchen Whitmer

 

 

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2 Thoughts to “Whitmer Hasn’t Abandoned 45-Cent Gas Tax Increase But Is ‘Desperate’ to Avoid Shutdown”

  1. Michael j Kutchey II

    No 45 cent gas tax

  2. Jean Hill

    Michigan GOP, keep up the good job of not raising the gas prices. Gov. Whitmer’s proposal is ludicrous. The more anyone in in this adm opens their mouth the more ludicrous they sound.
    Now they are wasting tax monies joining a lawsuit against President Trump (who is trying to protect the citizenry). Sec of State IMPROVED the process of renewing license and driver’s license, oh please give me a break.

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