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Budget Conference

April 28th, 2009 by Mike Vasilinda


After weeks of secret negotiations, state lawmakers have an outline for talking about the budget and for going home. The lack of agreement so far is forcing them to extend their session, set to end Friday, by a week. Higher cigarette taxes and some increased gaming seem likely, but the details are still to be worked out. One winner is the state University System. It was slated for 5 Hundred million dollar cut in the house budget. Sen. Al Lawson says it has been whittled down to 120 million.

“I guess in order for the Senate leadership, the president, to bring the House on, instead of a 500 million dollar cut they agree to go down to a hundred twenty something million dollars,” Lawson said. “But still we’ve got to see how that’s going to work. If it’s still going to cause a lot of problems for the universities, that could really bog things down.”

Exactly what fees are being increased or what programs are being cut wont be finalized until next week.

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