Budget Sparks Battle Between Governor, Legislature

Budget Sparks Battle Between Governor, Legislature

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(KSL News) A battle between the Legialture and the Governor is brewing over budget priorities.

Differences of opinion are becoming a little more clear---and public--after the Governor's first televised news conference.

Governor Huntsman says he disagrees with a House Leadership plan to use between $80-and $90-million of new money for transportation. Instead, Huntsman is pushing for $33-million, preferring to pump more money into programs like education, and health care for the poor.

Friday, Huntsman said he's willing to fight for the money.

Gov. Huntsman: "I'm going to do it doggedly, and we're going to do it interfatigively, and we're going to find allies in the legislature who are willing to do business with us."

House leaders are not budging on the budget, saying that putting off transportation projects could add up to a tax increase down the road.

Rep. Ron Bigelow/(R) Majority Leader: "You can't ignore transportation. If we ignore it this year and next year, it will almost force us into a tax increase, and I don't think that's what people want."

Last Monday, House Democrats also publically disagreed with the Republican plan to put $80-million into transportation. Since the Governor is on the same side, this battle is sure to resurface soon.

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