A subsitute for the economic development bills that have been the cornerstone of the special legislative session will be voted on tomorrow in the House Economic Development Committee. Committee Chair Ann Zerr (R-St. Charles) says the talks have been between the Governor’s office, the House and Senate leaderships.

Zerr, who said she was not optimistic about the bill’s chances after Monday night’s committee hearing, says the committee will be ready to vote Thursday. Rep. John Diehl (R-Town and Country) sent a press release saying he is more optimistic after recent discussions.

Senate leaders say they were not included in the negotiations between the House leadership and the governor’s office.  An angry senate leader Rob Mayer of Dexter says a senate shutdown of the special session is under consideration.   Some senators see the House “deal,” as take it or leave it proposition.

Zerr claims the House has been talking with Senate leadership, but won’t say to whom it has been talking. 

Senate leaders say the House cannot accept the House position and the House knows it. Mayer calls the deal a “big smelly” kettle of fish, and contends the Senate’s been excluded from the process, which he says makes it almost impossible to pass legislation.

Majority Senate Republicans caucused late in the afternoon, with Mayer hoping for a meeting with the Governor and House leaders.  He later got a copy of the proposed House bill and was planning to review it before the Senate returned for an evening session.

Senate Floor Leader Tom Dempsey says he will formulate an adjounment motion, as he puts it, when the Senate re-convenes athis evening.  Mayer admits the senate is close to calling it quits for the session.

AUDIO: Allison Blood and Bob Priddy with the story [mp3, 2 min.]