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Legislator appeals for a “straight path” to adjournment

There’s not much public action so far today at the statehouse, but Senate Democratic Leader Mike Gronstal says legislators meeting in private are making progress.

“All over the place,” Gronstal says, “every nook and cranny of the building.”

There are still unresolved issues in the debate over education reform, namely how to evaluate teachers and whether to remove some home schooling restrictions.

Legislators haven’t put the finishing touches on next year’s state budget either, and there are a variety of disputes over spending, including a divide over whether Planned Parenthood will get any state tax dollars for providing cancer screenings and birth control pills to low-income women.

Gronstal’s hinting, however, that lawmakers of both part are “close” to a deal on taxes — a deal that would ease commercial property taxes.

Republican Senator Nancy Boettger of Harlan used this morning’s opening prayer in the Senate to seek divine intervention.

“Lord, we look to you this morning for a straight path, that path that leads us to adjourning this place,” Boettger prayed. “You know that we often struggle with that part of the session as we’re trying to make the final negotiations. Help us through this, Lord. Guide and direct us. Help us to be kind in the process.”

A Democrat in the House joked it might be time to “douse” the legislature in WD-40 so things would “get rolling.”