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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Scott walking back his call for business tax cuts in this budget?


Florida Governor Rick Scott talks with reporters, Monday at the Capitol in Tallahassee. [SCOTT KEELER | Times]

Republican Gov. Rick Scott has had some tough talk for lawmakers when it comes to his call for a 45 percent cut to the corporate income tax rate. Scott has implied a budget veto, but the first-time office holder has displayed the rhetorical nimbleness of a career politician when it comes to his official statements on the matter.

Following news law night that lawmakers won't follow his advice on tax cuts, Scott seemed to shift the focus today from a business tax cut in this budget to simply starting the process of a business tax cut. (Lawmakers are prepared to cut water management district tax collections by $210 million.)

"I'm glad that they are doing the right thing with regard to water management districts," Scott said. "And I remain confident that we're going to start the process of eliminating the business tax. It's clearly the way to get our state back to work."

But Scott then flipped the other way when asked if the water management district cut was enough to satisfy his initial call for $1.7 billion in tax reductions this year.

"The budget that I expect to sign will reduce the size of government, the cost of government and will reduce business taxes," Scott said.

[Last modified: Monday, May 2, 2011 1:59pm]


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