Legislators continue debate over budget

Lawmakers seem close to making an agreement on the state budget. One of the key parts is trying to decide how much money will go towards education.

- Lawmakers seem close to making an agreement on the state budget. One of the key parts is trying to decide how much money will go towards education.

Legislators have been working on an agreement; the sticking point is $30 million on k-12 education. So will the budget be cut? Gov. Doug Ducey says no.

"We are negotiating the budget right now, you are not going to see a cut on K-12 education, you are going to see additional funds, we have been clear on that through the state of the state to budget negotiations," said Ducey.

House Majority Leader Steve Montenegro says there is a lot of bargaining going on right now as legislators try to come to an agreement, and that is normal.

"See you cannot look at this process and say education is not important because it is at center stage right now, we are looking at education, public safety, making sure the most vulnerable among us are taken care of," said Montenegro.

So what about the proposed $5 million for ASU's center for the study of economic liberty, and the UofA's center for the philosophy of freedom. Seed money for the programs was provided by the Charles Koch Foundation, one of the conservative Koch brothers.

"You are going to see more funding at universities, and we are believers in a diversity of thought in universities," said Ducey.

So is that money going to stay in the budget?

"The budget is in negotiations right now, so it is in a state of flux," he said.


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