PHOENIX — Legislative negotiators finally hammered out a .23 billion state budget Monday by providing some extra funding for state universities but not as much money for child welfare services that was sought by Gov. Jan Brewer.
The compromise — which was being voted on Monday evening — was reached as Senate Republicans agreed to spend more than they had originally wanted but still less than sought by Brewer and even their House counterparts.
The final deal gives an extra million to the University of Arizona over current funding and an identical amount to Arizona State University. That's 0,000 less for each than the House plan but still more than the .3 million for each the Senate had been offering. Northern Arizona University will get 0,000 over its current funding.
The deal actually is better for UA than the zero net increase Brewer had offered. ASU and NAU, however, will also get some of an extra .2 million in the package to bring their per-student aid up to what the UA has been getting.
Diabetics enrolled in the state Medicaid program will get access to insulin pumps. But the House could not convince senators to extend coverage to also include chiropractors and podiatrists.
The negotiations produced no additional money beyond the .7 million that was in the original House and Senate plan for the new Department of Child Welfare and Family Services. That is less than the more than million requested by Brewer for the agency that will replace Child Protective Services.
Instead lawmakers postponed that fight for another day.
Read more of this story in Tuesday's Star.
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