AZ Senate approves school funding deal

AZ Senate approves school funding deal

PHOENIX (AP) - The Arizona Senate has voted to approve a package of bills that will pump $3.5 billion into K-12 education over 10 years and settle a five-year-old lawsuit filed by schools over skipped inflation payments required by the state Constitution.

Friday's vote came after majority Republicans rejected a series of amendments offered by Democrats to the plan Republicans negotiated with schools.

The House passed the three bills late the previous night so the plan now goes to Gov. Doug Ducey for his promised signature.

The House vote came without any Democratic votes on two of the bills, but with unanimous support for one in the Republican-controlled House. That legislation actually appropriates the money.

The Senate also was unanimous on the funding bill. Three Democrats joined 17 Republicans to back the others.

Voters will have to approve the whole agreement in a May 17 special election.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)