HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut lawmakers say they’ll likely pass a plan in the new year to permanently replenish funds to a program that helps cover Medicare-related expenses for tens of thousands of needy senior citizens and people with disabilities.

Democratic and Republican legislative leaders said Tuesday a special legislative session will probably convene on December 29, but the full General Assembly won’t return until possibly January 4th or 5th to vote on the proposed fix.

Without revealing the details, the leaders say they have a tentative agreement on the spending cuts needed to make up the $54 million reduction that lawmakers originally made to the program. It helps pay for Medicare expenses such as premiums.

Meanwhile, lawmakers are considering another possible special session to address the growing state budget deficit that has developed.