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Jun 15, 2010 2:21 PM

Senators rewrite House-backed budget plans

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) Senators have rewritten the state's budget bills to reverse House-proposed cuts to charity hospitals and colleges and to account for further drops in revenue that House leaders haven't acknowledged.

To make the plans work, the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday used "rainy day" fund dollars and money from a tax amnesty program. The House hadn't used those dollars because the money is part of a dispute between the two chambers.

Senators reshuffled reductions to higher education management boards, the state Medicaid program and the charity hospitals but the cuts are less deep than proposed by the House. Senators stripped all the pet projects House members added to the budget.

Tuesday's actions set up the chief points of haggling between House and Senate leaders with a few days left in the session.

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