- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 17, 2014

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - A top Democrat says the Michigan House should vote on a Senate-approved plan that would significantly raise gasoline and diesel taxes to generate at least $1 billion for road repairs.

Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer told The Associated Press Wednesday there’s an “enormous desire to see the House actually take a vote on the bipartisan plan” the Senate passed. She says House leaders can request the bill be returned from a conference committee for an up-or-down vote before the lame-duck session’s scheduled end Thursday.

She says Gov. Rick Snyder, business, labor and education groups all back the Senate plan.

Whitmer says senators took a “tough vote” to more than double fuel taxes over four years and says that legislative supporters “deserve to have a vote in the House.”

The House never voted on the Senate plan. Majority Republicans instead voted along party lines to eliminate the sales tax on fuel within six years and increase per-gallon fuel taxes by the same amount. It would avert a tax increase by moving money for schools and local governments to road construction.

Whitmer says while legislative leaders are exploring a potential ballot proposal to send voters, there’s “only real interest if the Senate plan doesn’t float over there.” She says leaving the issue to voters “has got a lot of problems.”

A spokesman for House Speaker Jase Bolger says the House GOP can’t support the Senate plan and compromise is a “two-way street.”


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