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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

BOG suit to cost taxpayers up to $250K

15

April

A lot of Floridians probably aren't following closely the university system governing board's tuition-setting fight with the Legislature.

But taxpayers might want to take note, because the ongoing legal battle will cost them as much as $250,000.

The Senate has a contract with the law firm Carlton Fields, which is providing four attorneys, a paralegal and law clerks at a cost of $140 an hour to $400 an hour.

The contract is for up to $250,000, and the Senate has the right to terminate the contract at any time. The Board this past summer joined a lawsuit filed against the Legislature by former Gov. Bob Graham that asks the court to determine whether the Board or Legislature has the right to set tuition.

Lawmakers assert it's their right, as part of their budget-making duties. And one of Senate President Ken Pruitt's priorities this session is to send to voters a proposed constitutional amendment that would settle the matter, in the Legislature's favor, once and for all.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 11:51am]

    

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