Florida Legislators May Need Overtime To Create A Budget

State lawmakers may have to extend the annual legislative session due to an ongoing deadlock over the Florida budget.

The House and Senate needed to have the budget done by Tuesday in order to vote this Friday with the 72-hour "cooling off period" rule.

However, trouble over how the state will pay for Medicaid has legislators caught in a bind. 

“Make preparations [to head into overtime] because that’s kind of where we are headed,” House Speaker Richard Corcoran said Tuesday evening, after a day of behind-the-scenes negotiations with the Senate.

Corcoran said a “best-case scenario” would be finishing the session Saturday. But he also said it was possible the session would be extended to Monday or that Gov. Rick Scott could call a special session that might start as soon as Monday.

This is the second year in a row that Florida lawmakers been unable to wrap up the budget within the two-month long session.

Last year, lawmakers extended the session for three days to vote on the budget and then had to return for a special session after Scott vetoed the public-school portion of the budget, which he deemed inadequate.

Corcoran did not detail the reasons for being unable to reach agreement.

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