Capital Report: 03-08-2012

Mar 8, 2012

The budget is complete. But in a frantic race to finish Friday, the legislature is debating policy reforms to health care, auto insurance and failing public schools. James Call reports an ever-changing bi-partisan coalition is putting up obstacles for all three issues to clear by tomorrow/tonight’s scheduled adjournment.

Lawmakers are considering a tax package that would grant almost 120-milllion dollars each year in tax breaks to businesses and consumers in the state. Regan McCarthy reports the Senate Budget Committee approved the measure Wednesday in an unusual late-late session committee meeting.

One of the biggest disputes of the 2012 Florida Legislative Session has involved the Personal Injury Protection, or “PIP” reform issue.  The House and Senate bills addressing that issue are still far apart.  And as the session winds down, Tom Flanigan reports supporters of the House bill, including Governor Rick Scott, are ramping up the pressure….

A vote on the controversial bill allowing parents to petition to force changes in failing schools has been pushed back until Friday. Lynn Hatter reports the move comes as the political wrangling continues over the measure, setting the stage for a final day showdown on the Senate floor.

A bill that would punish coaches for “unethical recruiting” of student athletes has narrowly passed out of the Senate and is making its way to Governor Rick Scott. As Sascha Cordner reports, critics say the bill will unfairly impact the way the Florida High School Athletic Association currently governs that type of situation.