Senate Finance rolls out proposal meant to spur talks

The Senate Finance Committee has proposed a version of the budget similar to what lawmakers passed in late April as a way to force negotiations between the House and Senate on a spending plan.

The proposal was rolled out Sunday, one day before notices are scheduled to be sent to state workers warning of possible layoffs if a fully funded budget is not passed by July 1.

Committee co-chair Pete Kelly called the panel’s proposal part of a strategy to get the budget into a conference committee where House and Senate negotiators can try to come to terms. To reach a conference committee, the House would have to reject the Senate plan.

The House passed a compromise between the majority and minority but senators balked at some of the terms.