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2016-17 budget

Florida TaxWatch: 2016-17 budget includes $104.9 million in turkeys

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Money for aviation and manufacturing programs at Brevard County public schools. Cash for Hillsborough County Fair and the Hardee County Cattlemen’s Arena. They might be worthy projects, but they are also just a few of 143 projects on Florida TaxWatch’s annual turkey list. The 2016 list was released Friday, just one day after Gov. Rick Scott signed the state’s $82 billion spending plan. “Florida TaxWatch commends the Legislature for drafting a balanced budget that meets the needs of many of…

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Legislature sends $82.3 billion budget to Rick Scott

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The budget is official in Gov. Rick Scott’s hands. The Legislature sent Scott the budget — and four other related bills — on Thursday. The Naples Republican now has until April 1 to act. The Legislature overwhelmingly approved the $82.3 billion spending plan on Friday. The proposed budget includes $20.2 billion for K-12 public school education; $1 billion for the Department of Children and Families for mental health and substance abuse treatment; and $10.7 million for Florida’s crime laboratories to…

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Florida Legislature approves $82.3 billion budget, adjourns Sine Die

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The Florida Legislature overwhelmingly approved the state’s $82.3 billion spending plan, with just one lawmaker voting against it. The Senate passed the fiscal 2016-16 state budget shortly after 5 p.m. Friday with no debate. The House approved the budget 119-1 earlier in the day. State Rep. John Tobia, a Melbourne Beach Republican, was the lone no vote. “We had a great opportunity to work together and bring forth a great budget,” said House Speaker Steve Crisafulli in remarks following the…

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House prepares for vote on state’s $82 billion budget

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The Florida House rallied behind the Legislature’s proposed budget Thursday, teeing up the $82.3 billion spending plan up for a vote later this week. State lawmakers debated the budget, shrugging off a structured debate format that has been used in recent years. The reason? Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle appeared to support the budget. “I think we need to notice this historic moment,” said Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, a Tallahassee Democrat. “I have a feeling we’re going to…

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TED budget conferees wrap up negotiations

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The joint budget conference on Transportation, Tourism and Economic Development came a bit closer to agreement Monday afternoon, with the third House offer closing out the largest chunk of the $12.8 billion budget segment. With the addition of $3.2 million for a trio of line items, lawmakers now agree on a $10.75 billion budget for the Department of Transportation. Among the changes was $2 million in trust fund money for a road project in Seminole County and another $225,000 for the Center for Urban…

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Budget conference to begin this weekend

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Legislative leaders issued a joint statement on the 2016-17 state budget Thursday night: Members, We are pleased with the progress President (Tom) Lee and Chair (Richard) Corcoran (the Senate and House budget chiefs) have made and are optimistic we will be ready to begin the budget conference this weekend. We will update you as early as possible tomorrow, so you can make the appropriate travel arrangements. Thank you for your patience as we work through this important process. We look…

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