State lawmakers continue negotiating next year’s budget

Lawmakers approved a $5 billion temporary budget while they continue negotiations.

BOSTON (WWLP) – July 1st marks the start of the new fiscal year and a deadline for lawmakers to finish budget debates. But a final spending plan for the state has not yet been approved.

Lawmakers are still working to reach final agreement on the fiscal 2018 budget. The state’s six member Conference Committee continued budget talks on Friday, with less than a day left before the start of the fiscal year.

With the new fiscal year quickly approaching, lawmakers approved a $5 billion temporary budget to fund state services while they continue negotiations.

Both the House and Senate approved spending plans that are over $40 billion, but the final negotiated spending plan may need to be adjusted with tax revenues coming in below expectations.

“It’s a back and forth process,” State Rep. Todd Smola explained. “We’ve got to reconcile those two big documents that spend over $40 billion dollars, so that’s not the easiest thing to do.”

An approved spending plan will still need the governor’s signature before it can go into effect, but one committee member told 22News that a budget likely won’t get passed until after the start of the fiscal year.