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FRIDAY, APRIL 1, 2011, 8:39 A.M.

WA Lege Day 82: More on museum bill, floor action in morning

OLYMPIA -- A House committee is expected to slice many parts out of a bill that would have consolidated several arts and culture offices into one mega-agency, but still offer new funding for Spokane's Northwest Museulm of Arts and Culture.

The House State Government and Tribal Affairs Committee is meeting in executive session this morning to amend the bill, which Thursday drew sharp criticism from a range of people unhappy about the prospects of a large new state Department of Arts and Culture.

Most of that consolidation would be gone under an amendment being proposed this morning, but the MAC and the State History Museum in Tacoma would still be receive money from a special fund set up to build the Heritage Center in Olympia.

The committee met briefly and went into caucus so that each party could take the temperature of its members on the new proposal. Update to come.

Both the House and the Senate are scheduled to vote on bills this morning, and the respective Ways and Means Committees, which have a big backlog of money-related bills, have afternoon meetings.

A House budget proposal is now rumored to be coming Monday. Of course, this time last week, the rumor was that the House budget would be released this Monday and it wasn't. .So why should we believe it this time? No reason other than the legislators are running out of time -- only 23 days left in this regular session.

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Jim Camden
Jim Camden is the Olympia bureau chief, covering the Legislature and state government. He also is a political columnist and blogger for Spin Control.

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