WASHINGTON (CNN) – The size of the final stimulus bill, still being worked on at this hour, has dipped to about $789 billion, according to several senators involved in negotiations and other Democratic sources.
That figure is lower than either the House or Senate bills - though Democrat Ben Nelson warned CNN Wednesday that number could change as discussions continue.
Nelson, Susan Collins and other centrist senators spoke as they returned to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's office to continue ongoing talks with White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel and Budget Director Peter Orszag.
Collins and others continue to say they're narrowing their differences, and remain optomistic they can reach agreement today.
Nelson said they have put back some funding for education, which has been a concern of House Democrats.
One of the sticking points has been the nearly $20 billion in school construction that was chopped from the Senate version of the bill.
Nelson told CNN they are trying to add the money back, but change the focus from construction to modernization.
Republicans like Collins have told us that one of the concerns about the school construction fund is that it would not immediately create jobs, because local school districts tend to take a long time to agree on new schools.
The idea at work appears to be that modernization may be less bureaucratic and move faster.
Nelson also confirmed CNN's Tuesday night report that lawmakers are scaling back a Senate-passed tax credit for homebuyers, and likely eliminating a tax deduction for car buyers.