Gov. Inslee says state parks to stay open Friday amid budget work

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Gov. Jay  Inslee has asked state parks to remain open Friday as lawmakers move closer to moving a new state budget.

Originally state park officials said because they need time to prepare the parks for closure, they needed to shutter them a day before a potential partial government shutdown. That would have meant that park staff would have removed campers from the parks on Friday morning, and day use visitors and new campers would have been denied entry.

The Democratic-controlled House and Republican-led Senate have been struggling for months to find compromise on a budget that addresses a state Supreme Court mandate on education funding. They reached agreement on the budget after overnight negotiations that ended Wednesday morning. A vote is expected Friday.

Lawmakers are in the midst of a third overtime session, and if a new budget isn't signed into law by midnight Friday, a partial shutdown starts Saturday.