In case you missed it, Governor Scott convened a special session of the Florida legislature to push through a backroom budget deal budget to give himself a multi-million dollar political slush fund in exchange for backing a controversial plan to drain funding from public schools and give tax dollars to corporations that want to profit off children’s education. Bottom line: this session shows how Scott is a typical Tallahassee politician who is looking out for himself and his political cronies, while hardworking Floridians pay the price.   What will voters take away from this special session? That Scott is willing to jeopardize Florida’s schools to fund his pet projects and provide kickbacks to his political contributors. 

And where has Scott been? He fled to DC to visit Trump.

Here’s what Floridians are watching:

Rick Scott’s Self-Serving Special Session

WFSU: DSCC Video Blasting Scott’s Special Session Deal
Saint Peters Blog – Florida Sunburn: DSCC goes after Scott over special session
Politico Florida: “Rick Scott’s Self-Serving Special Session 

And reading:

Associated Press: Session on verge of collapse as Florida GOP leaders feud
“Florida’s Republican-controlled Legislature, which has been wracked by feuds among its top leaders for the last several years, is in danger of ending a three-day special session without restoring billions in money that public schools use to pay for day-to-day operations.
The session is scheduled to end Friday, but after two days there remained a divide over spending that appears to have been partially spurred on by Gov. Rick Scott’s decision to veto more than $400 million in projects, including tens of millions in programs for the state’s 12 public universities.

If legislators don’t act then public schools will lose out on more than $11.4 billion in state funding that it supposed to start trickling down later this summer.”

Miami Herald: Is $85M grant program good government or a slush fund for the governor?
“Does $85 million directed to a new economic grant program qualify as a slush fund for the governor?

The head of the agency that will manage the newly developed grant fund, the Department of Economic Opportunity Secretary Cissy Proctor, wouldn’t embrace the loaded language but, in meetings before the Senate Appropriations Committee, she didn’t correct legislators who said the money gives the governor unfettered ability to steer money to hand-picked programs without transparency.”
‘The way the House bill is written, an individual citizen, a campaign contributor, could call up the governor’s office and ask him for this project and there is no due diligence anywhere, and the governor could approve it. Yes or no?’’ Latvala asked Proctor during a meeting of Senate Appropriations Committee on Wednesday. Proctor didn’t deny it.’” 

Sun Sentinel Editorial: Florida’s secret budget deal undermines education, public trust.
“The budget deal that Gov. Rick Scott announced Friday is lousy in terms of substance and how the deal came about.

It would give public schools some temporary operating cash, but poke a long-term hole in funds for construction and maintenance. It would give the governor an $85 million slush fund for economic development. It would come at the expense of state colleges and many worthy local projects.” 

Tampa Bay Times Editorial: Florida budget deal trades cash for bad policy.
“The cost of this detente is too steep, with the governor poised to allow horrendous legislation to become law that would further dismantle public education.”

Tampa Bay Times: Romano: A ruse by any other name still stinks.
“If you’re keeping score at home: Scott got what he wanted…And you got played.” 

Miami Herald: A fed-up Senate spells serious trouble for Rick Scott and Corcoran.
Saint Peters Blog: Jose Javier Rodriguez: We’re being called back to bless backroom deal.
Pensacola News Journal Editorial: Gov. Rick Scott sold out to secrecy.
Sun Sentinel Editorial: Florida’s secret budget deal undermines education, public trust.
The Ledger: Editorial: Gov. Scott, Polk State doesn’t deserve this fate.
Ocala Star Banner: Editorial: Don’t cut aid to state colleges.
Gainesville Sun: Editorial: Secret deal only slight improvement.
Orlando Sentinel Editorial: Heed voters’ will on Florida land conservation.
Sun Sentinel Opinion: Gov. Rick Scott puts personal agenda ahead of Florida families.
Tampa Bay Times: Editorial: Florida budget deal trades cash for bad policy.
Tampa Bay Times: Romano: A ruse by any other name still stinks.
Sun Sentinel: Gov. Rick Scott cuts millions from South Florida projects.
Tampa Bay Times: Uh oh: Florida lawmakers’ special session in jeopardy before it even begins.
Daytona Beach News Journal: Volusia school officials: Rick Scott’s budget increase not enough to meet needs.
Herald-Tribune: Governor vetoes science program for USFSM students at Mote.


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