Rick Scott

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses Florida Governor Rick Scott’s proposed 2014-2015 budget, as this year’s Legislative Session gets underway. Gov. Scott is proposing a spending plan of $74.2 billion.

UWF

One of the issues the legislature will take up in this year's session is Performance Based Funding for Florida's Universities.  And, if implemented, the system could cost the University of West Florida a lot of money.

Associated Press

Gov. Rick Scott touted Florida's improving economy in his fourth State of the State Address, which also made a case for re-election as much as it laid out his plan for the final year of his first term.  Any doubts that the 30 minute speech would also serve as the unofficial kickoff to Gov. Scott’s re-election bid were dispelled right out of the gate. The Republican referred to the economy under predecessor Charlie Crist – without mentioning the former Republican who is now running for governor as a Democrat. “Florida was in a hole. Unemployment was around 11%,” said Scott.

Office of Rick Scott

Gov. Rick Scott will kick off the 2014 legislative session Tuesday by asking legislators to approve his tax cut package and by asking to keep tuition rates low. 

Florida Senate

Florida Governor Rick Scott delivers his annual State of the State address Tuesday, March 4, signaling the start of the 2014 Legislative Session. His speech will start at 10 a.m. Central Time.  Again this year, Senate President Don Gaetz and House Speaker Will Weatherford have joined together on a priority agenda. “These are issues that rise above politics and we think they can get done. They must get done.  We will get them done,” says Gaetz, a Republican from Niceville.

Once almost universally accepted and praised, the Common Core educational standards have come under increased attack recently.  The latest comes from the New York State United Teachers, withdrawing its support for Common Core not because of the standards themselves, but because of what they call the State Department of Education's failed implementation of the plan. Other states, mostly led by Republican governors, call Common Core a federal intrusion and blame the Obama administration for trying to take control of state education standards.  But Common Core began IN the states.

Wikipedia

Florida’s new second-in-command began work on Monday. Carlos Lopez-Cantera is the state’s 19th lieutenant governor and first Latino to hold that office.

The 40-year-old Lopez-Cantera -- a former state legislator and Miami-Dade Property Appraiser -- was sworn in by Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Ricky Polston in a small, private ceremony held in the governor's office. A public swearing-in was held Monday afternoon.

As part of his remarks, Lopez-Cantera recited some of the talking points he and Governor Rick Scott will carry onto the campaign trail this year.

tampabay.com

Governor Rick Scott on Tuesday gave Carlos Lopez-Cantera a late 40th birthday gift, naming him the state’s new lieutenant governor. Lopez-Cantera replaces Jennifer Carroll, who resigned ten months ago.

Lopez-Cantera is no stranger to Tallahassee. Before his election as Miami-Dade Property Appraiser in 2012, he served eight years in the House. Lopez-Cantera chaired the Business Regulation and Government Affairs Committees, and was Majority Whip and then Majority Leader.  Scott says Lopez-Cantera’s political connections were key to his choice.

Reuters

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is being sued over his decision to leave the post of lieutenant governor vacant for nearly ten months. A Tallahassee lobbyist and political activist is asking the Florida Supreme Court to force an appointment within 30 days.

Article-4, Section 2 of the Florida Constitution says: “There shall be a lieutenant governor, who shall perform such duties pertaining to the office of governor as shall be assigned by the governor, except when otherwise provided by law, and such other duties as may be prescribed by law.”

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses Florida’s general revenue estimate for Florida, which projects what the sales and use tax revenues will be.   The latest forecast from state economists shows an increase o f$300 million relative to the summer projection. 

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