GOP Fla Sen: Time to commit to education funding, even if it means bucking leadership
After several years of steep cuts to the state budget, including education spending, Sen. Jack Latvala said Tuesday the time is ripe for the state to look at raising new revenue, including closing a loophole on Internet sales taxes.
"I'm in the business world. I've been in the business world a long time. And I've never seen a business yet that survived and prospered by cutting," Latvala said at a legislative delegation breakfast organized by the Pinellas County School Board. "You have to plan for the future and you have to pay for the things you need to do.
"And I think our real challenge in Tallahassee this year is going to be whether we cut some more, or whether we finally say, 'It's enough, we got to find some ways to enhance the budget so we don't have to keep doing that.' "
Latvala, known for his maverick streak, also suggested it might be time for fellow Republicans to buck legislative leadership and do what's best for their local communities.
"That's going to be the challenge this year," he said. "That's going to be the test of whether we have people who will stand up for the local community or who are just going to go with the leaders up there who say no new money" for anything.