- Associated Press - Friday, August 22, 2014

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - A top aide to Gov. Rick Snyder has paid $16,700 in property taxes and interest after improperly claiming a principal residence exemption on two houses for three years.

Richard Baird, the Republican governor’s transformation manager, made the payment Friday in suburban Lansing.

He bought a house in Clinton County’s Bath Township in 2011 while his wife and daughter continued living in Palatine, Illinois.

Baird came under scrutiny Thursday because he shouldn’t have lowered his tax bill in Michigan and taken a “substantially similar” exemption in Illinois.

The state Democratic Party on Friday called on Snyder to fire Baird. But Snyder spokeswoman Sara Wurfel says Snyder’s focused on “continuing our state’s comeback.”

She says Baird also has asked to be removed from Illinois voter registration files since he’s registered in Michigan.

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