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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sen. King casts doubt on UF fee bill viability



Hmmm, maybe that University of Florida $500 fee proposal isn't so revived after all.

After a key House education council on Tuesday passed an overhauled version of the bill to establish a $500-per-semester fee at UF, it seemed like the controversial proposal had some new life. Rep. David Mealor said the new version of the bill reflected the concerns of the governor's office and representatives from the Bright Futures and Florida Prepaid scholarship programs.

But then Sen. Steve Oelrich, sponsor of a Senate bill to establish the fee, expressed resistance to change his bill so that it matches the House's much tamer version, which would gradually implement the fee between 2008 and 2012.

Sen. Jim King, an FSU graduate who sits on Sen. Evelyn Lynn's higher education appropriations committee, cast further doubt on the proposal's Senate progress Wednesday - UF Day at the Capitol.

He pointed out that "I don't even know if Sen. Lynn will hear the bill in her committee. And you know, there are five people on that committee, and three of us - me, Sen. Lynn, and Sen. (Charlie) Justice - have said we won't vote on anything like that."

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 1:42pm]


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