States Rejecting Federal Money

Tuesday, 08 Mar 2011 04:30 PM

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Missouri Republicans want the state to refuse $285 million in federal money for extended jobless benefits and public schools.

The money should go toward paying down the federal deficit, state Sen. Jim Lembke, a Lemay Republican, told the newspaper. He’s working on a bill to block the state from receiving the federal money.

Sen. Will Kraus, a Raytown Republican, said Missouri needs to find tens of millions in budget cuts, instead of accepting the money.

A similar debate has been playing out in other states as officials elected in last November's conservative wave look for ways to send a message to Washington. In Wisconsin, Ohio and Florida, for example, new Republican governors have rejected federal money earmarked for high-speed rail projects in their states.

Lembke said Monday that he doesn't plan to back down, despite some hesitation among fellow Republicans.

"My intention is to stand my ground and advocate that we need to send that money back," he told the newspaper.

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