January 10, 2012
The last time Virginia's House and Senate hit all their budget-writing deadlines was 12 years ago. But this year, legislative leaders say they'll actually comply with their own written timetables.
Senior House and Senate Republicans — with cameo appearances by House and Senate Democratic leaders — said in a Monday news conference the 2012 budget talks will be more orderly, coordinated, civil and timely than the divisive brinksmanship of recent years.
Among the goals is to give legislators 24 hours — not just a few minutes — to digest the conference report by House and Senate negotiators before they vote.
The deadlines were adopted, as always, in December in the legislative procedural resolution. The lawmakers say the difference is that this year, for a change, they won't ignore the deadlines.