Joe Negron says Senate will boost funds for FSU engineering school

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The Senate may be asking for more money to create a separate engineering school at Florida State University, Appropriations Chair Joe Negron said on Friday.

The stand-alone facility — which the Senate spending plan already slated $10 million for construction and $3 million in operational costs — was not included in the House budget proposal.

“I’m not only going to include the funding for the FSU College of Engineering in the budget, we’re going to increase the funding,” Negron added.

Negron will likely push to increased spending on the FSU facility by between $4 million and $5 million during budget negotiations.

FSU shares the current College of Engineering with Florida A&M University, the state’s historically African-American college, which denounces the proposal to split the department.

House Speaker Will Weatherford said Thursday that he wants more involvement by the Florida Board of Governors, the group responsible for the university system.

Negron refuses to answer directly if the Senate is open to making approval by the Board of Governors a prerequisite for a stand-alone school.

“We’re still working out the details,” Negron told reporters.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.