Republicans propose 1-month budget as emergency option

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Senate Republicans have released a plan that would enable the state to keep running an extra month in case lawmakers are unable to pass a new two-year budget by the end of the current fiscal cycle early next week.

The plan put forth Thursday by Sen. Andy Hill, Republicans' key budget writer in that chamber, would fund government at the current level through the month of July.

The Democratic-controlled House and Republican-controlled Senate have been locked in budget negotiations that have driven them into a second overtime legislative session. If they haven't passed a budget by midnight Saturday, the governor is certain to call them back for a third special session to finish work on a two-year operating budget that is expected to be about $38 billion

A new two-year budget must be signed into law by midnight June 30 or else dozens of state agencies and other offices would completely or partially close and more than 26,000 workers would be furloughed.