LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The Latest on consideration of Michigan’s budget and a fight over teacher pensions (all times local):
Gov. Rick Snyder says he will be meeting more frequently with Republican legislative leaders after a “positive” meeting.
GOP lawmakers are pushing to close the pension system to newly hired teachers in favor of a 401(k) only. Snyder opposes the switch, and the impasse led legislators to exclude Snyder from their budget decisions.
Snyder and the leaders met Wednesday for the first time in two weeks. He says they are searching for common ground among various proposals related to the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System. Snyder, declining to be specific, says “we’re moving in the right direction.”
Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof also calls the meeting “very positive.” He says the governor and legislative leaders can find a “reasonable way” to close the pension system to new hires.
Michigan would cut spending at all but one of its 30 prisons under a compromise hashed out by lawmakers but without involvement from Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration.
A Republican-led legislative conference committee approved a nearly $2 billion corrections budget Wednesday. It includes a $10 million reduction across all correctional facilities except the state’s women’s prison.
The Snyder administration had vehemently opposed a $41.6 million cut to the $1 billion facilities budget proposed by the Senate, warning it would lead to hundreds of officer layoffs and create unsafe staffing levels. Corrections Department spokesman Chris Gautz says it is too early to say what the $10 million reduction would mean.
GOP lawmakers have excluded Snyder from major budget decisions due to his opposition to closing the pension system to newly hired teachers.
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