The Michigan Legislature last week approved $146 million in budget cuts suggested by Gov. Jennifer Granholm, including the closure of two local prisons, in a bid to bring down an estimated $240 million shortfall in the current budget.

The cuts include trimming $63 million from state welfare programs, $40 million from other programs and policies, and $10 million in administrative cuts.

 Budget director Bob Emerson said the administration would likely hold off on additional cuts until details of an expected federal stimulus package become clear.

“The question for us was, 'What can we get down before the end of the year?’ ” he said. “We thought it was important to do something and make a down payment on what we thought the deficit was going to be.”

The spending cuts spare state revenue sharing as well as higher education funding and the school aid fund.

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