Wisconsin state police were dispatched to the homes of several Democrat state senators in an effort to compel them to return to the legislature, said Department of Transportation spokesman Steve Olson.
Fourteen Senate Democrats fled to neighboring Illinois to prevent a quorum from voting on a budget repair bill that would curb the collective bargaining rights of public sector workers and raise their contributions to pensions and health insurance plans.
Meanwhile, a separate but nearly identical budget bill is up for debate in Wisconsin's other chamber, the state assembly. The assembly lawmakers are poised to vote on the bill Thursday.
The state faces a Friday deadline to balance the budget. Wisconsin faces a $137 million budget shortfall by June 30 and a $3.6 billion gap by 2013.