- Associated Press - Friday, April 8, 2016

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The Latest on Kentucky’s budget negotiations (all times local):

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5 p.m.

Kentucky’s college and university presidents say they will agree to budget cuts of 2 percent in the current year and 4.5 percent over the next two years to end the gridlock over state spending.

State lawmakers have been unable to agree on a two-year plan to spend more than $65 billion in public money because they cannot agree on how colleges and universities should be funded. If lawmakers do not pass a budget by July 1 portions of state government would shut down.



In a letter to Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, Republican Senate President Robert Stivers and Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo, nearly all of the state’s college and university presidents say they would agree to the cuts in order for lawmakers to pass a budget. Kentucky State University’s president did not sign the letter.

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4:15 p.m.

House Democrats say they would agree to spend less on state colleges and universities if it means lawmakers could reach an agreement on a two-year plan to spend more than $65 billion in public money.

Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo said House leaders offered a compromise on Wednesday that would reduce spending on higher education by 2 percent in the budget year that begins July 1. Spending levels would remain the same for the following budget year.

Senate Republicans have insisted on cuts to higher education in order to pay more money toward the state’s public pension debt. House Democrats had refused to make any cuts to public education. Stumbo said the proposal retains his party’s commitment to education while moving the budget process forward.

Senate Republicans have not responded to the proposal.

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