Budget Battle Goes to Wire

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Lawmakers will meet over the weekend to complete the budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. They're deciding each agency's share of the $3.7 billion general fund.

House Education Chairman Rep. Randy Pierce said there's not going to be enough money to go around.

House leaders also made their second unsuccessful attempt this week to get permission to file a new bill to raise cigarette taxes by nine cents a pack, from the current 18 cents to 27 cents.

House Speaker Billy McCoy said the tax would generate money to open and operate mental health crisis center.

It was unclear whether lawmakers would cut enough money from other parts of the budget to open the crisis centers.

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