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      Blue Cross Blue Shield could help local revenues

      Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan says it could pay roughly $4 million annually in local property taxes with most going to the cash-strapped city of Detroit if the Legislature and Governor Rick Snyder approve a proposed overhaul.

      Michigan's largest insurer estimates it would pay more than $2.6 million on properties it owns in Detroit, based on 2011 tax rates. The remainder would go to Lansing, Southfield, Grand Rapids Township, New Hudson, Marquette and Utica for properties there.

      The proposal passed last week by the Senate would end BCBS' tax-exempt status, ease regulations, and move from a charitable trust to a customer-owned nonprofit. Spokesman Andrew Hetzel said Thursday it provides new revenues "during a time of tight budgets."

      Snyder vetoed overhaul legislation in December because of an anti-abortion rider.