Michigan lawmakers begin approving $55.5 billion budget

LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Michigan lawmakers have begun approving a $55.5 billion state budget after an agreement was struck between Republican leaders and Gov. Rick Snyder.

House-Senate conference committees passed the two spending bills Tuesday. The full House plans to vote later in the day, with the Senate finalizing the plan Thursday before a summer recess.

Majority Republicans say the state would spend about 2 percent more in the fiscal year starting in October, if federal dollars are factored in. They emphasize that overall spending would rise no more than inflation and be down slightly in the general fund.

Democrats say money should be diverted from savings to fix deteriorating roads because a GOP-passed 2015 transportation funding plan is being phased in too slowly.

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