Haslam's spending plan headed to Senate floor

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Gov. Bill Haslam's more than $31 billion spending proposal is headed for a vote on the Senate floor.

Members of the Senate Finance Committee approved the plan 10-0 Tuesday night. It's expected to be voted on Wednesday.

The plan seeks to phase out Tennessee's inheritance tax and lower the state's sales tax on groceries.

The inheritance tax currently applies to estates worth more than $1 million, and was paid by 845 estates in the last budget year. Haslam's plan would bump that exemption up to $1.25 million next year and to $5 million by 2016.

The sales tax on food would be cut from 5.5 percent to 5.25 percent.

The proposal also calls for raises for state employees and more spending on construction on college campuses.

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