Wednesday, March 14, 2012
The fiscal impact to higher education still stands in the way of Florida legislators reaching a deal on a budget that should top $70 billion. The state’s budget chiefs from the House and Senate will continue Monday negotiating the difference out of the fiscal plan. Efforts intensified Friday when unsettled issues were bumped up to Senate Budget Chairman J.D. Alexander, R-Lake Wales, and House Appropriations Chairwoman Denise Grimsley, R-Sebring. While both chambers have agreed to Gov. Rick Scott’s request to increase public school funding by $1 billion, the lawmakers must still settle on an overall spending plan for the Pre-K-12 programs and how it impacts the state’s universities needed to help balance the state’s budget. “We want to make sure we don’t ask the universities to go so low in their balance, with the methodology, that they have real serious problems,” said Alexander.