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New state budget pact reached, govt. shutdown averted

June 28th, 2013 - 5:21am

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Washington lawmakers have reached a long-sought accord on a new state budget that would avert furloughs of state employees.

Legislative leaders hope to give final approval of the measure before state employees leave work Friday.

The $33.6 billion, two-year spending proposal was still unavailable for public review Thursday afternoon.

Gov. Jay Inslee says the deal "makes it clear that state government will continue to operate."

Budget negotiators said they were confident the measure would swiftly make it through the Legislature. Lawmakers said the final plan puts an additional $ 1 billion toward the state's basic education system in response to a state Supreme Court ruling that determined lawmakers weren't adequately funding schools.

While overall spending would rise by 8 percent, K-12 education spending would rise more than 11 percent.

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