Capital Report: 02-23-2012

Feb 23, 2012

Members of the Florida Legislature are hammering out the last pieces of the state’s budget. The Senate version totals 71.2-billion dollars, which is about 2-billion dollars higher than the House proposal. But Regan McCarthy reports concerns about cuts, especially in higher education are at the forefront of many senators’ minds. 

The House Higher Education Committee has released its plan to further revamp the state’s college and university system. Lynn Hatter reports the proposal would expand the power of the board that oversees the state’s 11 public universities—and make it harder for the colleges to establish bachelor’s degree programs. 

The first of about 10 anti-abortion bills filed in the Florida Legislature is now heading to the House floor. But, as Sascha Cordner reports, the measure has opponents saying it will further restrict abortions from taking place in Florida, calling it “more government intrusion.”

When it comes to property taxes, Florida’s local governments usually find themselves on the opposite side of the issue from the state’s business community.  But Tom Flanigan reports there was a rare show of agreement today (Thursday) during the Senate Finance and Tax Committee meeting…. 

In the wake of a new report highlighting an increase in fatalities among teen drivers, Governor Rick Scott has declared this  Florida Road Safety Week. James Call reports, Scott joined law enforcement officials and paramedics on the steps of the Capitol to call attention to the hazards of impaired and distracted driving. 

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