State Capitol News
12:40 pm
Mon June 15, 2009

Brewer threatens budget lawsuit

Phoenix, AZ – Governor Jan Brewer is threatening to sue the Legislature if she
doesn't get the budget bills they passed more than a week ago by
the end of the day today.

The state constitution requires lawmakers to send the governor
all bills that have been approved. But Brewer, while asking for
the budget, has not pushed the issue in the last 11 days while
talks on the $8.2 billion spending plan were going on. She said
all that changed when Senate President Bob Burns walked away from
the table Sunday night.

(We did compromise until it came to the issue of education and
then those vulnerable populations that reside in our state, the
elderly, the children, the disabled and the most frail.)

But Burns said he didn't walk away -- at least not permanently.

(When things bog down in negotiations, sometimes one of the
parties gets up and leaves. I just did not feel like we were
making any headway at that point in time and we needed to break
the meeting. We certainly did not call off negotiations.)

And Burns said he's not going to meet the governor's deadline to
send her the budget. Brewer said she has been willing to
compromise, saying she even gave up on her demand for an
immediate sales tax hike to balance next year's budget. But the
governor said she remains adamant that a tax increase eventually
will be needed.