DENVER - A $23 billion state budget passed the Colorado Senate with increased funding for education, a bigger rainy day fund, and money for an aerial firefighting fleet.
The Senate passed the budget for fiscal year 2014-15, which begins July 1, on a bipartisan vote of 26-8 on Friday. Only Republicans voted no.
The budget adds $100 million to colleges for financial aid and to limit tuition increases. Per-student spending at public schools is also increasing to keep up with inflation and enrollment growth. And the state's budget reserves are increasing to 6.5 percent, from 5 percent.
Lawmakers also are paying $21 million for an aerial firefighting fleet.
The House passed the budget last week with only one Republican in favor.
A committee will now reconcile differences between the two chambers to finalize the budget.