Oelrich files UF fee bill, vows to fight "vigorously"
Flanked by University of Florida President Bernie Machen and state university system Chancellor Mark Rosenberg, freshman Sen. Steve Oelrich vowed Monday to "vigorously" push for Machen's proposed $500-a-semester undergraduate fee.
Oelrich, R-Gainesville, filed a bill Monday that would give the board that oversees Florida universities power to establish the so-called "academic enhancement" fee at UF. Rep. Charles "Charlie" Dean, a Republican from Inverness, filed the companion House bill Friday.
The Board of Governors and Rosenberg support the UF fee for incoming undergraduates, and they stress it would be a pilot program applicable only to UF. Machen would use the $36-million in annual fee revenue to hire 200 new professor and 100 new academic counselors.