Arizona budget bill advances to the Senate - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Arizona budget bill advances to the Senate

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) -

Arizona lawmakers in the Senate now have to tackle the state budget.

The House passed the spending plan late last night after making a number of changes to the proposal.

A number of lawmakers still remain at odds over funding and cuts.

We're talking straight party line action here.

Republicans hold a majority they all voted yes, all the Democrats voted no. Still, it took a week for those House Republicans to come to an agreement.

Six of them had threatened to break ranks, so their leaders gave them some of what they wanted, they passed a budget and sent it to the Senate.
 
Let's check out the House budget at 9.24 billion dollars; $58 million more than the Senate's budget, $33 million more to charter schools run by school districts, nine hundred thousand dollars for private prisons, no increase for the new division of child welfare.
 
But after a brief session today, the Senate president says Republicans are serious about funding the new agency adequately.

"the fact we made this from 670 million to 730 million we made it publicly and executive branch so I think it is a pretty hard commitment," said Senate President Andy Biggs.

The Senate takes up the House budget on Monday.

So obviously we are interested in finding out what members of the House of Representatives think about what the Senate is likely to do, so we came over here and nobody home.

The place was locked up because House members worked late last night.

The Senate president hoping there's a smooth path to an agreement.

"Again we will try to work with them on the House side, and the Executive side saying what can we do to make sure this is essentially a consensus budget as we wrap it up," said Biggs.

And as Republicans hash it out, all Democrats can do is sit and watch from the sidelines.

The Senate picks up the budget again in its appropriations committee on Monday morning hoping to get an agreement within a week.

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