Negron: Austerity Budget Has Room For A Reservior

Nov 28, 2016

Senate President Joe Negron wants the state to build a $2.4 billion reservoir in western Palm Beach County, despite House Speaker Richard Corcoran’s call for budget cuts.

Toxic algae blanketed Senate President Joe Negron's district this summer, prompting his call for a $2.4 billion reservoir to store and clean water.

House and Senate budget battles are nothing new, even when the speaker and president are both Republican. But there isn’t much in Speaker Richard Corcoran’s history to suggest there’s room for compromise.

Earlier this year, Corcoran labeled Governor Rick Scott’s $250 million business incentive package “corporate welfare” before killing it outright. The year before, Corcoran and other ideologues led a revolt against Medicaid expansion.

But Negron is undeterred.

“I’m very optimistic that within the extraordinary budget that we have available to us, that we can find revenue to meet the priorities of both the House and the Senate.”

Budget forecasters say lawmakers will have less than 10 million new dollars to play with as they draft an $82 billion spending plan. Corcoran wants to start cutting now to fill a major shortfall predicted for next year.

But Negron is just as motivated. His Treasure Coast district was ground zero for massive toxic algae blooms that experts say the reservoir could prevent.