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Florida budget

Lawmakers Pass $88.7 Billion Budget To End Session

Mar 11, 2018
News Service of Florida

Florida lawmakers ended their 2018 session Sunday by passing an $88.7 billion budget, while Gov. Rick Scott signed legislation that provides record funding for Bright Futures college scholarships and continues expanding voucher-like programs for children to attend private schools.

With less than a month to work out substantial differences, the Republican-controlled Florida House and Senate on Thursday passed dueling $87 billion budgets for the coming year.

For the most part, Governor Rick Scott’s $87.4 billion budget proposal appears very promising. That’s according to the Florida Senate’s new budget chairman,  Sen. Rob Bradley (R-Fleming Island).

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

Among the $410 million worth of projects struck from the new state budget by Governor Rick Scott's veto pen are a number of items with ties to the Tampa Bay area.

Three-Day Special Session Called In Tallahassee

Jun 3, 2017

After reaching an agreement with legislative leaders to boost money for public schools and to back plans for economic-development and tourism funding, Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed an $82 billion state budget and called lawmakers back for a three-day special session to complete the deal.

“I think this is going to be good for job creation and I think it's going to be good for education,” Scott said, following a press conference at Miami International Airport with Senate President Joe Negron, R-Stuart, and House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes.

Gov. Scott Wields Veto Pen On New Budget

Jun 3, 2017

Gov. Rick Scott on Friday used his veto pen to slash $410 million in legislative projects across the state, saying they failed to “provide a great return for Florida families.”

In signing the bulk of an $80 billion-plus budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1, Scott told reporters the savings from vetoes will help cover a planned increase in public school funding, tourism marketing and economic-development efforts. Those issues will be a focus of a three-day special legislative session that will start Wednesday.

USF Communications and Marketing

Nearly a decade after the Great Recession, Florida may finally restore one of its main programs that aids students headed to college.

The state Legislature late Monday approved an overhaul of the state's higher education system that is intended to lift schools in the Sunshine State into the ranks of elite counterparts.

Florida's top Republican legislative leaders said Wednesday that they finally reached a deal on a new budget that should clear the way for them to end their session early next week.

Budget talks have begun—or at least the public face of them have started.  Lawmakers are planning an extremely tight timeline.

Spending offers are flying back and forth between House and Senate leaders.  But Nick Evans reports time is running short on this year’s legislative session.

House subcommittees charged with crafting portions of the state budget are trying to figure out how to make major cuts.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is calling for tax cuts again despite this year’s hazy budget outlook.  The governor unveiled his budget proposal Tuesday.

Gov. Rick Scott is calling for $60 million for the Indian River Lagoon and Caloosahatchee River in response to last summer’s toxic algae blooms.


Despite a request from Gov. Rick Scott for $250 million  this year, there’s not much money showing up in the Enterprise Florida Budget.

Budget Talks Likely To Start This Weekend

Feb 26, 2016
MyFloridaHouse.gov

House and Senate leaders said late Thursday they expect formal budget negotiations to start this weekend. An email to lawmakers from Senate President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, and House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, did not provide details.

Scott Unveils $79.3 Billion FL Budget

Nov 23, 2015
MyFloridaHouse.gov

Governor Rick Scott unveiled Florida's proposed $79.3 billion 2016-2017 budget on Monday. Scott said he hopes to allocate more money this year and is projecting the state's revenue to increase. 

Scott introduced the plan at a small manufacturing business in Jacksonville. He says small business are integral to Florida, because they help diversify the economy and create more jobs.

That's why he says the new budget will call for $1 billion in tax cuts for manufacturers and retailers. Scott also wants over $20 billion to go towards education. 

While the University of South Florida received funding in the state budget for its downtown Tampa medical school and a St. Petersburg business school, money that would have gone to a new research vessel was removed by Governor Rick Scott's veto pen earlier this week. The Florida Institute of Oceanography, the collaborative effort of dozens of research institutes and agencies, is based out of the USF College of Marine Science in St. Petersburg. The $6 million FIO was seeking would be used to buy a research boat to replace the aging Bellows. The Tampa Bay Times reports that FIO officials and state lawmakers are trying to figure out what to do next.

Children's Program Boost Makes Budget

Jun 26, 2015

After worries about cuts earlier in the year, $13 million is being added to the state’s Early Steps program, which serves babies and toddlers with developmental disabilities or delays.

House and Senate budget negotiators initially agreed on $3 million for Early Steps -- and Senate President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, added $10 million to the program as legislative leaders finished hammering out a $78.7 billion budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1.

Gov. Rick Scott included the program in his final budget, signed Tuesday.

Gov. Rick Scott vetoed nearly $57 million from the state’s Health and Human Services budget Tuesday, including $9.25 million for biomedical research.

Office of the Governor

Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday ended the state's biggest budget crisis in more than two decades by signing a more than $78 billion budget into law, but he may have created another divide with some of his fellow Republicans.

Scott signed the budget just days after the Florida Legislature approved it during an unusual June special session. State government would have been partially shut down if a new budget had not been in place by July 1.

 Update 4/2/2015: Senate President Andy Gardiner says increased budget uncertainty following the federal government's decision to delay talks about healthcare funding, may eliminate state employee pay raises from future budget consideration.

Health-Care News Casts Doubt on Budget

Apr 2, 2015

  The Florida Senate unanimously approved an $80.4 billion budget on Wednesday, hours before the state's health-care agency said the federal government had suspended negotiations on a $2.2 billion pot of money that is part of a conflict between the House and the Senate.

The announcement of a break in the talks between state and federal officials cast further doubt on whether the Legislature could finish its work on the budget in time for the scheduled May 1 end of the session.

Fact-Checking the Governor's Tax Cut Promises

Feb 15, 2015
politifact.com

If you know anything about Florida Governor Rick Scott you know one of his mantras -- less taxes. 

And as the legislature gets set to meet next month, Scott's budget will be a test of whether he's staying true to his campaign promises on that.

PolitiFact Florida has checked the budget against a couple of Scott's tax cut promises and has found that his proposals are, at least, on track.

Advocates Say State Should Spend More on Children in Surplus Year

Feb 8, 2015
Wiki Commons

Children's advocates say they're "cautiously optimistic" about Gov. Rick Scott's budget recommendations for the coming spending year, which contain relatively few cuts to programs that serve Florida's children.

But they're also wondering why --- with a surplus of more than $1 billion --- Scott hasn't suggested a greater investment in children, one that they say would be more commensurate with his request for $673 million in tax cuts and record spending on K-12 education and Everglades restoration.

Alan Diaz / Associated Press

Florida Gov. Rick Scott has been crossing the state this past week, vowing at campaign stops that if he's re-elected he will enact another $1 billion in tax cuts over the next two years.

Scott has said he can enact the tax cuts as well as boost spending on education and pay for new projects to help the environment because the state has a budget surplus.

"We know there's no question about it, it's your money, it's not government money," Scott said about his tax-cutting plans during a campaign stop held in Plant City.

USF News

Among the big winners in the 2014-15 state budget signed by Gov. Rick Scott on Monday is the University of South Florida, which picked up funding for a number of projects that still needed support.

According to USF News, all five of the university's top legislative priorities were met.

Florida legislators should be able to end their session on time.

A nearly $77.1 billion state budget was delivered to state legislators at 8:35 p.m. on Tuesday.

By Florida law, legislators must wait 72 hours before taking a final vote on a new budget. The session is scheduled to end on Friday.

The budget is the one bill each year that the Florida Legislature must pass. Budget negotiators met all weekend in an effort to hammer out the final details of the spending plan.

Flush with plenty of extra cash during an election year, the House and Senate on Thursday passed rival versions of a new state budget that spends more money on child protection, health care for the disabled and public schools.

But there remain key differences between the two chambers over everything from the role of state colleges and spending on school and college construction, to how much money to spend on environmental programs.

Florida legislators are going to vote on rival versions of a new state budget.

Both the House and Senate are expected to debate and vote Thursday on a roughly $75 billion budget.

The votes will trigger a final series of budget negotiations. State legislators have until early May to pass a final budget and send it to Gov. Rick Scott.

The House budget is nearly $75.3 billion while the Senate budget is nearly $75 billion.

Gov. Scott Outlines $74 Billion Florida Budget

Jan 29, 2014

Unwrapping a couple of new highlights after a weeks-long rollout, Gov. Rick Scott released a nearly $74.2 billion budget Wednesday that would leave total state spending relatively flat, slash taxes and boost funding for education and child welfare.

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