After days of negotiations, and word from the state printer that time would run out within hours, the Assembly and Senate scheduled late-evening sessions. It seemed there was a compromise deal – two separate bonds – including 20 billion for education, and 4 billion for levees….which is critical, Republican Assemblyman Rick Keene told members:
“Every winter that we go through in this state and we don’t fix the levees is another winter that major metropolitan areas are in peril.”
The Assembly approved both bills…but the Senate adjourned without taking up either – and instead approved a different measure, allocating 1 billion dollars for levee repairs. Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata:
“We’re going to continue working. We have until November to give the voters what they’re asking for, and we will do that.”
In a statement, the Governor’s press secretary praised lawmakers for progress made, despite disappointment over missing the June ballot.