Will Gov. Scott remember a favor? This Democrat hopes so
Orlando's Democratic mayor, Buddy Dyer, was in familiar territory Tuesday, walking the halls of the Florida Senate where he used to work. The mayor's mission is to get $15 million for the University of Central Florida's downtown Orlando campus in the next state budget.
This is a sensitive subject for Orlando's movers and shakers because of Gov. Rick Scott. With a boost from Senate President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, the money was in the Legislature's budget last session, but Scott quickly wiped it out with the stroke of his veto pen -- the biggest single-ticket item on his long list of $461 million in line-item vetoes. A ticked-off Gardiner went on Orlando TV to call Scott's veto "a shot at Orlando."
But the new year will bring a new session and new hope for UCF's campus. After all, as Dyer was quick to note Tuesday, he's a big-city mayor who two weeks ago endorsed one of Scott's top priorities: a bigger pot of incentive money for Enterprise Florida. It was an easy call, Dyer noted, because the ask came from "the man with the veto pen."