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Capitol Buzz: 5 things to watch today in Tallahassee

Here's what we're watching on Day 52 of the 2012 Legislature:

It's all about education in the House on Thursday. The controversial charter school bill, HB 903, will be heard on the House floor. As it stands, the bill allows charter school to more easily access federal education funds — and requires charter schools to post information about their management companies online. But bill sponsor Rep. Janet Adkins has twice tried to add in language that would require traditional school districts to share their construction money with charter schools. She plans to try again on the floor, she told reporters this week.

Two other important PreK-12 education bills will come before the House: a bill that would expand the tax credit cap (in effect, expanding voucher programs for low-income students) and a bill that makes changes to the Florida High School Athletic Association. Coaches have slammed the later of the two bills, saying it gives private-school athletes an unfair advantage.

Universities are also on the agenda. The House will debate a bill that would allow the University of Florida and Florida State University to have more flexibility in setting tuition.

• The House is also taking up a measure to reform personal injury protection, or PIP. Reforming the program is a key part of Gov. Rick Scott's 2012 agenda.

• Over in the Senate, the so-called funeral buffer bill, SB 632, will be heard on the Senate floor. The bill, by Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, would make it illegal to picket or protest near a funeral, burial or memorial service for a veteran, emergency response worker, elected official or child.

• We're also watching to see if the Senate votes on a bill that would allow unregulated surplus-lines insurers to take polices out of Citizens Property Insurance. Sen. Mike Fasano peppered the bill sponsor with questions about the bill on Wednesday.

What should we talk about tomorrow? Tweet to us @PoliticsTBTimes

Capitol Buzz: 5 things to watch today in Tallahassee 03/01/12 [Last modified: Thursday, March 1, 2012 6:00am]
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