- Associated Press - Thursday, March 31, 2016

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Leaders in the split Iowa Legislature say they’re still negotiating a deal over the state budget, but they remain tight-lipped on releasing more details.

Lawmakers for the Democratic-controlled Senate and the Republican-majority House said Thursday they’re working together to reach an agreement on the budget that goes into effect in July.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, a Council Bluffs Democrat, says there’s been “frank discussions” and there are “significant differences.” House Speaker Linda Upmeyer, a Clear Lake Republican, says there’s been progress but GOP leaders “have to take things off the table” that the Senate may want. Both lawmakers refused to elaborate.

Each side agrees there’s about $7.35 billion available. Gov. Terry Branstad also released updated budget recommendations Thursday that reflect that target.

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