Session Ends, Budget Not Done - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

84th General Assembly

Session Ends, Budget Not Done

April 16, 2003
Posted at: 9:25 p.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- With the failure a final effort to extend the legislative session, House and Senate leaders sent staff members home Wednesday night.

The regular session officially ends at midnight, but it was effectively over a few hours earlier.

After staff members left, some with boxes packed, lawmakers made dinner plans and left the Capitol in droves.

Finishing a state budget will have to wait for a special session -- which Governor Huckabee has pledged to call. Huckabee has said he will call legislators back in time to have a budget by the June 30 end of the fiscal year.

The House was consistently two votes short of a two-thirds majority for extending the session. The Senate had earlier voted to keep working but couldn't get enough House members to go along.

A core of anti-tax House members voted together to block the extension. The Legislature is expected to return to session in the fall, too, to work up an education package.

Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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