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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

A House skirmish over cane fishin'



Cane_pole Rep. Jimmy Patronis, R-Panama City, said he's looking out for the working man and one of the small pleasures of life.

But his effort to carve out a $7.50 annual license-fee exemption for saltwater cane fishing got sidetracked after a 52-51 vote in the House to temporarily pass his amendment.

Noticeably steamed, Patronis stormed to the front of the chamber to get the vote sheet. Ten minutes later, he was still animated, talking with whip Carlos Lopez-Cantera, who made the motion to TP.

"My concern was, we've got in the state what I call working poor. Folks that are blue-collar, who don't have the ability to own a boat," Patronis said. (People on Medicaid and food stamps, under 16 and over 65 are already exempt).

He said he did not think most House members understood the merits of the issue at the time of the vote. Stay tuned ...

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 5:56pm]


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