Higher ed, beach funding teed up in Senate

By News Service of Florida

With committee meetings scheduled to start next week in advance of the 2018 legislative session, senators are poised to take up higher-education and environmental issues that are priorities of Senate leaders.

The Senate Education Committee on Sept. 12 is slated to consider a higher-education bill (SB 4) that, in part, would require universities to develop “block” tuition plans and would make permanent expansions in Bright Futures scholarships and need-based aid programs, according to a meeting notice published Tuesday.

The bill, sponsored by Higher Education Appropriations Chairman Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, is a priority of Senate President Joe Negron, R-Stuart.

Meanwhile, the Senate Environmental Preservation and Conservation Committee is slated Sept. 12 to take up a bill (SB 174), filed by Senate Appropriations Chairman Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater, that would set aside at least $50 million a year to help address issues such as beach erosion.

The committee also is expected to take up a bill (SB 204), filed by Environmental Preservation and Conservation Chairman Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, that would lead to the state spending at least $75 million a year on springs projects and $50 million annually on projects related to the restoration off the St. Johns River and its tributaries or the Keystone Heights Lake Region.


News Service of Florida