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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sarasota County lawmakers volley unemployment compensation bill

Apparently the Miami-Dade delegation doesn't have the market cornered on intra-county drama.

Rep. Doug Holder, R-Sarasota, ignored warnings from his own senator, Republican Nancy Detert of Venice, and amended a controversial bill (HB 7005) tonight to cut unemployment insurance and give state businesses a tax cut. The move bounces the bill back to the Senate where Detert has said any changes could kill the entire proposal.

Holder, however, has called her bluff. "I think Sen. Detert will support this legislation," he said.

Holder pointed to the wide 29-10 margin the bill passed in the Senate and repeated Detert's warning to him.

"They could jeopardize losing the entire bill if they don't accept the bill that we're sending over to them tonight," he said. "It's on their door step."

Holder's changes included a cut to the state's maximum unemployment benefit from 26 weeks to 23 weeks, a change that Detert has been fighting for weeks.

Reached late tonight, Detert cautioned that she had not seen the amendments but said, "I sincerely doubt it can pass the Senate that way."

[Last modified: Thursday, May 5, 2011 9:18am]


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