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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Judge keeps voucher amendments on ballot



The ruling is in. As our sister blog The Buzz reported a few minutes ago (are they fast or what?), Leon Circuit Judge John C. Cooper has just ruled that two proposed constitutional amendments dealing with school vouchers are legal and can remain on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Cooper wrote that the Taxation and Budget Reform Commission did not exceed its authority when it put Amendments 7 and 9 on the ballot, and that the ballot title and summary language for Amendment 9 were not misleading, as the plaintiffs had argued.

The plaintiffs, including the state teachers union, promised to appeal. "We are disappointed," Florida Education Association President Andy Ford said in a press release. But 140,000 union members "will continue to educate the people of Florida about these misleading amendments." The ACLU of Florida weighed in here.

The reaction from defendants: "Based on today's ruling, we feel confident we're going to continue to win no matter the venue," Greg Turbeville, a TBRC member and former Jeb Bush policy adviser, told The Gradebook. "I would hope that the opponents would now ... have a debate on what is good education policy rather than have more lawsuits and clog up the courts."

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:52am]


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