Buying more time to work out their differences over state construction spending, state House and Senate negotiators will reconvene conference committee on the supplemental state budget at 9 p.m. on Thursday.
The delay could stall negotiations on dozens of other bills with a finance-related component as a deadline approaches on Friday to have legislation ready for final votes before session adjourns next week.
State Sen. David Ige (D, Aiea-Pearl City), the chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, made it clear that the Senate is going to enforce an internal procedural deadline to have most negotiations wrapped up by 6 p.m. on Friday. The Senate took a similar position last session, which resulted in several bills being left on the table.
“From the Senate’s perspective, the 6 p.m. deadline on Friday night is a real deadline from our perspective,” Ige told state Rep. Marcus Oshiro (D, Wahiawa-Poamoho), the chairman of the House Finance Committee, at budget talks this morning. “We don’t see anything that’s in conference currently that we would feel compelled to extend the deadline at this time.
“So I think it’s important that we make decisions in a timely manner so we can avoid the logjam at the end.”
“I appreciate that very much,” Oshiro replied.