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Differences Remain for Budget Conferees

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Conferees on the 1989 budget resolution were set to resume discussions this week to resolve a dispute that broke up the conference acrimoniously on April 28.

"Either it will be resolved this week, or, frankly, it probably won't be resolved for weeks ahead,'' predicted Susan Frost, executive director of the Committee for Education Funding.

Ms. Frost added that if conferees should fail to agree on a resolution--which sets broad spending priorities within which appropriators allocate funds to specific programs--education spending could suffer.

The House's budget resolution earmarks $37.6 billion for the spending category that includes education, while its Senate counterpart allots $1 billion less.

But appropriations leaders may begin work this week even without a guiding resolution, and they may set spending levels for education programs lower than those provided by either budget plan.

The budget conferees' dispute revolves around the Senate committee's decision to earmark the largest spending increases for space as opposed to social programs, which are assigned priorities in the House plan. --JM

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