Senator Bob Dvorsky, a Democrat from Coralville who leads the Senate Appropriations Committee, describes the activity as “feverish.”
“It’s great,” Dvorsky told reporters late this morning. “The momentum’s moving forward.”
According to Dvorsky, Republicans and Democrats have agreed on spending levels in seven of the nine bills that outline the extent of state spending for the next budgeting year that begins July 1st.
A high-profile dispute over state support of the public universities has been resolved. Legislators agree to forward $23 million more dollars to the schools. Republicans initially sought to cut state support by $21 million.
There’s still no decision about an abortion policy statement that’s attached to a bill outlining spending for the Departments of Public Health and Human Services.
“There’s still some tweaks,” Dvorsky said. “I’m sure there’ll be some bumps before we get out of here.”
Dvorsky suggested the legislature could wrap up the 2012 session this week. Policy disputes over property taxes and education reform are not resolved yet, however, and it’s unclear if legislators will hammer out last-minute agreements on those issues or simply do nothing and walk away.