Florida legislators reach deal for schools and dike repairs

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By: Associated Press
June 9, 2017

Florida’s historic capitol building and current state capitol building, in Tallahassee on August 31, 2013.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida's legislators have reached a last-minute budget deal that would guarantee a boost in money for public schools but will also include money for repairs to the dike that surrounds Lake Okeechobee.

The deal reached by legislative leaders and Gov. Rick Scott on Friday should ensure that the three-day special session will end smoothly.

Scott initially called legislators back to town to set aside money public schools and to set aside money for economic development programs.

Senate leaders, however, said they also wanted to restore millions in money for university projects that Scott vetoed.

The final deal includes money for university projects but will also include repairs to the aging dike that surrounds one of the nation's largest freshwater lakes.

Public schools will get enough to increase per-student funding by $100 the state's nearly 3 million school children.

By: Associated Press
June 9, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida schools would get nearly $11.7 billion under a measure that the Florida House passed.

The House on Friday voted 107-6 for a school funding measure. The House also voted 111-4 for a separate bill that would provide money for economic development and tourism marketing programs.

Gov. Rick Scott called legislators back to town for a three-day special session that is scheduled to end Friday. If legislators fail to reach a final deal, schools could lose billions in funding.

Senate President Joe Negron says the Senate won't approve the two bills unless House Republicans and Scott agree to back top Senate priorities.

Negron says the Senate wants to restore $75 million worth of university projects Scott vetoed. The Senate also wants to restore some budget cuts to hospitals.

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