Utah lawmakers stumbled towards a thrift settlement Tuesday, and should have one by nightfall. Maybe.

Monday, just before midnight, the state Senate approved a thrift measure 18-11. But House members already had recessed for the night. Both houses will meet Tuesday afternoon, and House Democrats, who almost caused a breakdown in the session Monday because they didn't like what the Republicans were planning, say they'll likely go along with the Senate measure.The bill is similar to an accord reached by legislative leadership and thrift depositors' attorneys more than a week ago. The latest compromise measure is favored over another bill that depositors despised.

Thrift depositors have received more than $40 million of their savings through the court-ordered liquidation of thrift assets, and the new compromise would provide $60 million more. Depositors had an estimated $106 million in five thrift and loans before state regulators declared the Industrial Loan Guaranty Corp. insolvent and shut down the five institutions in July 1986.

House members voted on one technical bill, needed before the thrift settlement can be reached, three times. At one point, House members took action on the technical bill that repealed it before it could become law. Some representatives laughed over that, others just shook their heads in amazement.