Budget push continues with schools, crime bills

The Senate turns its attention to the biggest piece of the state budget on Thursday, scheduling a vote on a spending plan for public schools.

The House is due to take up a measure for public safety programs and state courts.

Republicans who run the Legislature are pushing a full slate of budget bills through both chambers this week.

The Senate education bill is similar to a bill that cleared the House earlier this week. Both would increase per-pupil aid to schools while cutting into special allowances for urban districts.

The House crime bill would cut spending on programs for crime victims and battered women, while slashing more than half the budget for a state agency that investigates discrimination claims. A similar measure already cleared the Senate.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)