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Colorado budget near completion after Senate vote

By Associated Press
Published On: Apr 04 2014 12:48:10 PM CDT

DENVER -

A $23 billion state budget passed the Colorado Senate with increased funding for education, a bigger rainy day fund, and money for an aerial firefighting fleet.

The Senate passed the budget for fiscal year 2014-15, which begins July 1, on a bipartisan vote of 26-8 on Friday. Only Republicans voted no.
    
The budget adds $100 million to colleges for financial aid and to limit tuition increases. Per-student spending at public schools is also increasing to keep up with inflation and enrollment growth. And the state's budget reserves are increasing to 6.5 percent, from 5 percent.
    
Lawmakers also are paying $21 million for an aerial firefighting fleet.
    
The House passed the budget last week with only one Republican in favor.
    
A committee will now reconcile differences between the two chambers to finalize the budget.

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