The Missouri Senate this week will be putting its stamp on the proposed state budget for the 2015 fiscal year.
The Senate plans to debate and vote on the $26.8 billion spending plan Monday.
That would set the stage for negotiations with the House over a final version that is required by the state constitution to be passed by May 9.
The budget pending in the Republican-led Legislature is about $900 million smaller than the one proposed in January by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon. The difference is due largely to the fact that lawmakers chose not to include a federally funded Medicaid expansion sought by Nixon.
Public schools, colleges and universities would get funding increases under all versions of the budget, but the exact amount remains to be settled.