Politics | WCTV Eyewitness News: Tallahassee, Thomasville, Valdosta

Fla. Senate Approves In-State Tuition Bill

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

News Release: Associated Press News
Updated: May 1, 2014

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida students who are living in the country illegally would qualify for in-state college tuition rates under a bill passed by the Florida Senate.

Thursday's vote was 26-13.

The bill heads next to the Florida House, which is expected to pass it and send it to Gov. Rick Scott.

While some Republicans have sharply criticized the idea as "pandering," Scott and other top GOP legislators have embraced the proposal during this election year.

The bill, if passed, would allow students in the country illegally to pay the same tuition rate as other residents if they had attended a Florida school for at least three years prior to graduation. Currently the in-state tuition rate is one-quarter of what is paid by out-of-state students and those who are undocumented.


News Release: Associated Press News
Updated: April 29, 2014

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The Florida Senate is reviving a tuition break for some Florida high school graduates who are living in the country illegally.

The Senate on Tuesday waived its rules and agreed to consider the bill before the session ends this week. No one objected to the motion made by Sen. John Thrasher, a Republican from St. Augustine.

The tuition break for students who are living in the country illegal has divided Republicans this session.

The measure passed the House but it is opposed by many top GOP senators. Sen. Joe Negron of Stuart used a procedural move to keep the bill from advancing.

But Gov. Rick Scott asked the Senate to consider the bill.

Sen. Jack Latvala, the bill's sponsor, has predicted a majority of senators will vote for the measure.


Associated Press News Release

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida Gov. Rick Scott along with former governors Jeb Bush and Bob Martinez are calling on legislators to pass a tuition break to students who entered the country illegally.

The three Republicans put out a joint statement Friday.

The push from Scott comes a day after a key Republican state senator used a procedural move to block the legislation from being heard next week in a Senate committee.

Sen. Joe Negron of Stuart said the break should only go to students who are U.S. citizens and Florida residents.

But Scott said students who have spent their childhood in Florida deserve the same rate as their "peers and classmates do."

Bush said that "punishing" children for their parents' actions isn't in the best interests of the state.


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