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Arkansas' Joint Budget Committee approves $5.2 billion spending plan, sends to House, Senate

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LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Legislation outlining Arkansas' annual $5.2 billion budget for the coming fiscal year is heading to the House and Senate for votes.

The Joint Budget Committee endorsed identical versions of the proposed Revenue Stabilization Act on Monday. The budget bill sets priorities for state spending.

The bills now go to the House and Senate. Under them, there would be increased funding for schools, prisons and Medicaid while keeping higher education spending flat.

Most other state agencies would see a 1 percent cut under the proposals, which were unveiled Friday and closely mirror Gov. Asa Hutchinson's budget plan released in January.

The bills call for setting aside $4.3 million in rainy day funds.

Lawmakers hope to wrap up this year's session by Thursday.

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