BOSTON (WWLP) – The economic development bill remains stalled in conference committee. However, lawmakers are pushing to move forward on the bill.

Both the House and Senate passed their own versions of the Economic Development bill during formal session, however they were unable to reconcile their differences in time to pass a final bill.

The roughly $4 billion economic development bill includes funding for affordable housing, hospitals and climate initiatives, as well as around $1 billion in permanent tax relief and one-time $250 stimulus checks for middle income tax filers. Both the House and Senate passed their respective bill unanimously.

Now, 13 state Senators sent Senate President Karen Spilka a bipartisan letter to suspend Joint Rule 12A and return to formal session to continue work on the economic development bill. Three of those senators are from western Massachusetts: Senators Velis, Gobi and Fattman.

“The inflation that our constituents are experiencing, the pain they’re experiencing at the grocery store and really everywhere they go, doesn’t stop. So, if there were ever a time to suspend Rule 12A and come back and deal with it, I think it’s now,” said Senator Velis.

Because this is a spending bill, it needs to be initiated in the House. However, the letter is calling on the Senate’s leader to stand ready.

The economic development bill fell into question after revelations that Chapter 62F was triggered by the state’s surplus and lawmakers were unsure if they had enough money for both Chapter 62F funding as well as tax relief. A formal session needs to be called for bond authorizations, which require a roll call vote.

The economic development conference committee remains in private negotiations.