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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Planned Parenthood spending ban won't be in state budget

House and Senate budget chairmen Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, and Sen. Tom Lee, R-Brandon, answer reporters' questions after agreeing to health care and environmental budget compromises.

Steve Bousquet, Times/Herald

House and Senate budget chairmen Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, and Sen. Tom Lee, R-Brandon, answer reporters' questions after agreeing to health care and environmental budget compromises.

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The Florida House has agreed to remove language it wanted in the state budget that would have blocked any health care money from Planned Parenthood.

Budget chairman Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, said Thursday that the House wanted to block the group from receiving money through state contracts while lawsuits in other states related to fetal tissue donation programs proceed.

"We felt until that cloud was lifted that we should have that prohibition," he said, "but this is a negotiation."

The Senate budget didn't have that language.

State law already prohibits taxpayer dollars from paying for abortions. The House was trying to block about $250,000 in other state contracts.

Nevertheless, a bill moving through the Florida Legislature could still block money from Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics.

The House on Thursday voted 74-44 in favor of a bill (HB 1411) that would prohibit state money going to any clinic that performs elective abortions. It also imposes greater regulations on abortion clinics and new requirements for doctors similar to rules passed in Texas that are currently under review by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Senate is expected to consider amendments to the bill Friday and could pass it early next week.

[Last modified: Thursday, March 3, 2016 9:43pm]

    

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