The Senate voted Tuesday to override Gov. Rick Scott’s veto of the public schools budget — as an “insurance policy” intended to keep the schools open after July 1 if this week’s special session of the Legislature breaks down.
“This is an insurance policy. We just don’t want to get to a situation where we end up without having our (education) finance program funded,” Appropriations Chair Jack Latvala said.
“You know as well as I do that we’re in contentious times here. We’re faced with very aggressive House of Representatives in advocating their position on issues,” he said.
“You never know what that’s going to produce. I don’t want to be responsible, as our Appropriations Chairman, and our president doesn’t want to be responsible, for getting into a situation where we leave town and we do not have our school funding in place.”
The measure passed with three dissenting votes — well within the necessary supermajority.
The new state budget takes effect on July 1.
The plan remained to take up separate legislation that would funnel $215 million into the education budget on top of the $404.6 million in the state budget approved during an extended session last month,” Latvala said
Sen. Tom Lee asked whether Latvala had briefed the governor on the plan, including the override.
“I’m sure they are watching on TV,” Latvala replied.