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This week In the Senate: Will 'perception of consensus' pan out?

Senate and House leaders will hunker down to iron out areas of disagreement in their draft budget proposals this week.

Legislative staffers have been instructed to prepare a spreadsheet comparing the two chambers' draft budget proposals.

"We think we are getting a lot closer," said Senate President Bob Burns, adding leaders would have a better idea once they sit down and do the actual comparison.

"Once we identify the areas of differences, then we can start working on eliminating those differences," Burns said. 

Legislative leaders plan to meet this afternoon to start reconciling differences, Burns said.

Burns said there is now a "perception of consensus" on the budget within his caucus. He clarified they have not counted the votes yet.

Members have been providing varying ideas about different issues and Burns said they have had to sort those out and make a judgment call.

"Hopefully we picked the right ones," he said.

Meanwhile, the Senate committee calendar is particularly light.

Besides the Senate Appropriations committee, which is schedule to tackle budget bills on April 28, only two other panels will be holding a hearing.

On April 29, the Public Safety and Human Services will discuss two subjects: Search and rescue and organized retail theft.

On the same day, the Education Accountability and Reform committee will hear the nomination of Timothy Dosemagen to the Commission for Postsecondary Education.

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