Monday, April 25, 2016

The sine die watch is on at the legislature

Guess what time of the year it is?

Multiple sources, meaning mostly lobbyists and members of the media (because my "insider" sources are Democrats, who are told less than the media), are reporting that the state's budget will be done this week, and with it, the 2016 session of the Arizona legislature.

Sounds simple, but the ride is going to be at once rough and stultifyingly boring.

There is going to be a lot of "hurry up and wait" this week at the Capitol.  The budget negotiations take place between the governor's office and the "leadership" of the legislature.

Democrats and rank-and-file Republicans aren't welcomed to the table.

 However, things could still go sideways at the lege.

If that happens (which seems unlikely at this point), don't be surprised if they finish up work on regular bills this week, adjourn sine die (sending everyone home), and bring back the lege in a short special session to pass a budget.

The pressure to adjourn is partially brought on by a legislative deadline, requiring the lege to adjourn sine die by April 30 (Saturday).

However, that deadline can be extended by a simple majority vote, which is something that the Republican majority can usually achieve, easily.

The more practical deadline is related to fund-raising - members of the lege aren't supposed to accept contributions from lobbyists during the legislative session, this *is* an election year after all.

In other words, they all want to get the hell out of Dodge (Phoenix) and get on with the real reason that they are involved in politics - $$$.

Anyway, as of this writing, no budget-related bill have been posted on the lege's website.

Some of the tweets from the day, some from when the Tweeters thought the budget might come down today, and some after their hopes were dashed -

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