Whitmer, GOP: Get us out of neutral on budget

Not surprisingly it appears Michigan residents will be stuck in neutral for awhile regarding any new solution to repairing Michigan roads and bridges.

The state Senate transportation budget subcommittee this week removed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 45-cent gas tax hike from her proposed roads budget for the Michigan Department of Transportation. Instead, GOP members said it was their intention to work separately from the budget proposal this summer to develop solutions for road funding.

Also not unexpected, Whitmer promised a quick veto of the measure under consideration this week if it arrived to her desk without the gas tax increase included.

It looks as if state residents will face a classic showdown between the GOP Legislature and the Democratic governor over the budget. And who knows how long it will take before the first one blinks and gives in to the other.

We would call upon Whitmer, Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield to come together in the spirit of bipartisanship displayed in the first weeks of the Whitmer administration and at least look to see if there isn’t some type of compromise that could be negotiated to advance the budget through the Legislature.

We understand this is all part of the political process. But needless posturing over moves everyone knew would happen anyway only delays an eventual solution.

Let’s avoid the 30-second sound bites and get down to the issue at hand: arbitrating a solution that all sides can live with.