Updated 6:20 p.m.
House and Senate lawmakers have begun negotiations on a compromise public works borrowing package with less than 72 hours to go in the 2016 legislative session.
A day after House lawmakers failed to pass an $800 million capital investment bill on the floor, a conference committee met briefly Friday morning in an attempt to bridge differences between the two sides’ proposals and get a bonding bill passed this session.
The two sides start out roughly $700 million apart; the Senate voted down a $1.5 billion bonding bill earlier this month. The Legislature must finish its work by 12:01 a.m. Monday.
“Time is short,” said Rep. Paul Torkelson (R-Hanska), chair of the House Capital Investment Committee.
Even-year legislative sessions have historically been bonding years, when lawmakers pass a large-scale borrowing package that helps fund infrastructure projects across the state through the sale of state-backed bonds.
The committee met twice Friday morning and early afternoon, adopting a small number of same and similar items before recessing. No updated time for reconvening has been posted.