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Report: Rob Bradley says 2017-18 budget will include money for land conservation

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Sen. Rob Bradley isn’t giving up hope the 2017-18 state budget will include money for the Florida Forever conservation lands program. POLITICO Florida reported Tuesday that Bradley said the budget would include spending for Florida Forever, for Florida Keys wastewater projects, his proposed projects along the St. Johns River, and Senate President Joe Negron’s proposed water storage reservoir. “This is going to be a budget that those who care about the environment are going to be very proud of,” the…

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Rick Scott calls proposed cuts to Visit Florida ‘irresponsible’ in new web ad

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Gov. Rick Scott is continuing his push for money for Visit Florida, releasing a new digital ad hitting lawmakers over proposals to cut funding for the state’s tourism marketing agency. In the 60-second spot, released by Scott’s political committee Let’s Get to Work, the Naples Republican is shown saying “Florida’s been winning, now a group of politicians in Tallahassee want us to lose.” “That’s irresponsible,” he continues. “It’s real simple, if the politicians in Tallahassee say they don’t want to…

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Budget deal struck, House and Senate leaders appoint conferees

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There is a deal. House Speaker Richard Corcoran and Senate President Joe Negron announced a settlement Thursday on the major points of difference between their chambers on an $83 million budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1, and appointed conference committee members to work out the details. The conferees were to begin work at 1:30. They have until noon Sunday — any differences remaining at that point would go to Corcoran and Negron to settle. “I am confident…

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Jack Latvala, Larry Ahern trade budget jabs on Twitter

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With 10 days until the scheduled end of the 2017 Legislative Session and no allocations on the desk, it’s fair to say things are getting a little heated in Tallahassee. Case in point: An exchange between Senate Appropriations Chairman Jack Latvala and House Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Larry Ahern on Twitter over the House’s proposed standard operating, or continuation, budget. As news spread Sunday the House had offered a so-called continuation budget, Latvala, a Clearwater Republican took to Twitter…

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Florida Education Association calls for proper funding for public schools in new ads

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The Florida Education Association is taking to the airwaves to call on lawmakers to better fund public schools. The statewide education association released two advertisements Thursday in response to several measures being advanced by the Legislature. The proposals, education officials said, would under fund public schools and harm public school students. “Students are at the center of everything we do. That’s why we are fighting for students and for better public schools,” said Joanne McCall, the president of the Florida…

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Charlie Crist leads 18-member Florida delegation urging Everglades attention from Donald Trump

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Democratic U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist and Republican U.S. Rep. Brian Mast have pulled together 18 of Florida’s 27 members of Congress to co-sign a letter to President Donald Trump urging that he “expedite and energize” Everglades restoration projects. In addition to Crist of St. Petersburg and Mast of Palm City, the letter is signed by Republicans Matt Gaetz, Neal Dunn, Ted Yoho, John Rutherford, Ron DeSantis, Bill Posey, Daniel Webster, Gus Bilirakis, Vern Buchanan, Tom Rooney, Carlos Curbelo and Ileana…

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Rick Scott to roll out his spending plan

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott is announcing his annual budget recommendations next week. Scott plans to release details of his spending plan on Tuesday during the annual legislative planning session hosted by The Associated Press. The Florida Legislature will consider Scott’s budget request during the session that starts in March. The Republican governor has already outlined some recommendations. Scott this week called on legislators to slash taxes by $618 million this year. Legislators usually use the governor’s budget recommendations as the…

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