Advertisement
  1. Florida Politics
  2. /
  3. The Buzz

Gov. DeSantis expects to sign the state budget next week

And he plans to use his line-item veto power.
Gov. Ron DeSantis was in The Villages on Tuesday talking about how he expects to sign the budget next week. (Governor’s Press Office)
Gov. Ron DeSantis was in The Villages on Tuesday talking about how he expects to sign the budget next week. (Governor’s Press Office)
Published Jun. 12, 2019

Gov. Ron DeSantis hopes to sign a state budget and issue vetoes next week, with the spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year expected to arrive on his desk Friday.

Appearing Tuesday at a bill-signing event in The Villages, DeSantis said he and his staff have completed a “first glance” at the line items in the $91.1 billion, 448-page document for the fiscal year that begins July 1. The governor has line-item veto power.

Florida’s budget includes millions for Tampa Bay projects

“Some of them (budget items) obviously just don’t pass muster with me, so they’re not going to make it,” DeSantis said. “There’s others that definitely pass muster, so they will.”

Senate President Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, intends to formally send the budget (SB 2500) to DeSantis on Friday morning, Katie Betta, Galvano’s spokeswoman, said in an email Tuesday.

Once the budget lands on his desk, DeSantis will have 15 days to act.

DeSantis said he’s still reaching out to lawmakers to get their justification for projects that made it into the budget.

“We’re in the middle of that process,” DeSantis said. “I hope that we’ll have everything signed sometime next week.”

When the budget was approved by the Legislature on May 4, DeSantis said he planned to put his line-item veto power to use.

Since then, DeSantis has repeatedly praised lawmakers for exceeding by $55 million his $625 million request for Everglades restoration funding and for separate water projects.

Last Friday, he said he intended to approve a new aircraft to fight wildfires. The budget includes $4.98 million for the Florida Forestry Service to make such a purchase.

Otherwise, DeSantis has mostly kept his budget plans within his office.

The budget includes high-profile spending issues such as a $242-per-student increase in school funding; more than $220 million to help areas of the Panhandle hit last year by Hurricane Michael; and $10.2 billion in general-revenue funding for health care and other social service programs, with much of that state money drawing federal matching funds.

The spending plan includes $3.4 billion in reserves, but DeSantis has indicated he would like to see a larger amount. Vetoes of spending could boost the reserves.

The business-backed nonprofit Florida TaxWatch has recommended DeSantis cut 109 projects from the budget worth a combined $133 million.

The group contends the projects, derided as “turkeys,” failed to be properly vetted before the Legislature completed the budget.

Dominated by transportation projects, the TaxWatch turkey list includes: $13.3 million sought by Sen. Wilton Simpson, R-Trilby, to widen County Road 491 in Citrus County; $1 million to restore Centennial Park in Fort Myers; $4.75 million for the Deputy William J. Gentry, Jr. Regional Public Safety Training Center in Highlands County; and $8 million for a workforce housing multi-family apartment complex in Jacksonville's urban core.

As of Tuesday afternoon, DeSantis had received 126 of the 194 bills approved by the Legislature during this year’s session. He’s signed 118 and vetoed two, according to a tally on the Senate website.

While the number of bills passed was smaller than in some past legislative sessions, DeSantis called the session “productive.”

“Sometimes I forget the stuff we’ve done because we’ve done so much,” DeSantis said.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Rep. Chris Latvala, chairman of the House PreK-12 Appropriations subcommittee, introduces his recommended spending plan for 2020-21. [The Florida Channel]
    The $650 million proposal exceeds the Senate version, but is less than the governor’s request.
  2. Lev Parnas leaves his arraignment with his wife, Svetlana Parnas, Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019 in New York. He and Igor Fruman are charged with conspiracy to make illegal contributions to political committees supporting President Donald Trump and other Republicans. Prosecutors say the pair wanted to use the donations to lobby U.S. politicians to oust the country's ambassador to Ukraine. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan) [MARK LENNIHAN  |  AP]
    A South Florida firm that represented Lev Parnas dropped the Ukranian-born South Florida businessman as a client in the past week.
  3. MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE   |   Times [MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE  |  Times (2018)]
    Fifth Third Bank announced on Twitter that its financial contributions would end “until more inclusive policies have been adopted.”
  4. President Donald Trump with, from left, Sen. Marco Rubio, and Sen. Rick Scott, visit Lake Okeechobee and Herbert Hoover Dike at Canal Point last year.
    One senator embraces the topic. The other avoids it.
  5. Rep. Bobby DuBose says he hopes 2020 will be the year the Florida Legislature limits the use of restraint and seclusion on students with special needs who grow violent. [The Florida Channel]
    ‘I pray to God this year will be the year,’ sponsor Rep. Bobby DuBose says.
  6. Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. [[SAMANTHA J. GROSS | Times/Herald]]
    A bill that would move the state’s Office of Energy from under Fried’s control to DeSantis is a priority of the governor, who is behind a series of efforts to consolidate power under his office.
  7. In this Oct. 22, 2018 file photo, people gather around the Ben & Jerry's "Yes on 4" truck as they learn about Amendment 4 and eat free ice cream at Charles Hadley Park in Miami. A federal judge has temporarily set aside a Florida law that barred some felons from voting because of their inability to pay fines and other legal debts. The ruling handed down Friday, Oct. 18, 2019 by U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle means thousands of felons who were denied the right to vote will be able to cast ballots unless the state gets a higher court to intervene or if Hinkle later upholds the constitutionality of the state law. [WILFREDO LEE  |  Associated Press]
    “Isn’t it punitive to say, ‘I will reinfranchise this group, but not reinfranchise this group?’” one judge asked.
  8. Then Florida Governor Rick Scott, left, talks with President Donald Trump after Trump's arrival on Air Force One at Signature Flight Support before speaking at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Annual Convention in October of 2018. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times (2018)]
    A spokesman for Scott said the Florida Republican ‘meets a lot of people and has no recollection of meeting Parnas’
  9. State Senate Education Appropriations chairwoman Kelli Stargel, R-Lakeland, unveils her chamber's 2020-21 education budget proposal during a brief committee meeting on Jan. 28, 2020. [The Florida Channel]
    Sen. Kelli Stargel suggests the state should meet Gov. Ron DeSantis’ minimum salary goal ‘over the next several years.’
  10. Signs at North Shore Park in St. Petersburg warn people Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2016 to stay out of the water due to contamination from partially treated sewage from the city's overwhelmed sewer system.
    “We’re way past the time of not addressing this issue,” said the bill sponsor, Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement