Senate kills Sunrail project
As expected, the Senate on Friday defeated the legislation allowing state purchase of the CSX rail line for Sunrail, a commuter train in Central Florida. Thirteen Republicans sided with 10 Democrats to defeat the most contentious and heavily-lobbied legislation of the 2009 session. It marked another setback for Gov. Charlie Crist.
The pivotal vote was 23 to 16 to kill an amendment that would have tacked a $2-a-day rental car tax onto the bill to create a dedicated funding source for Tri-Rail, the 20-year-old South Florida commuter rail. The amendment would have allowed the Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach County commissions to enact the rental car tax by super-majority vote, followed by a county-wide referendum in 2014.
[Photo: top, Senator Lee Constantine, left, is comforted by Senator Ken Pruitt after the Senate defeated legislation allowing state purchase of the CSX rail line for Sunrail, a commuter train in Central Florida. bottom, Senator Paula Dockery reacts as the Senate on Friday defeated the legislation. Scott Keeler, Times]