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President Office — Press Release


June 14, 2017

CONTACT: Katie Betta, (850) 487-5229

Statement by President Negron Regarding Veto of SB 374

Tallahassee —

Florida Senate President Joe Negron (R-Stuart) today released the following statement regarding Governor Scott’s veto of Senate Bill 374, the Excellence in Higher Education Act.


“This Session the Senate increased funding to students and universities by almost $800 million and passed SB 374, which contains many policies proposed and supported by Governor Scott, including summer Bright Futures.


“Since most of these policies, including the restoration of the Academic Scholar level of Bright Futures to 100 percent of tuition, plus $300 a semester for books, were funded in the budget, the Governor believes the expansion will be in place for one year.


“As I have traveled the state talking to families, I have learned what an important role Bright Futures plays as students plan their financial investment in a college or university education. Students and families deserve certainty when making these important decisions, and today’s veto makes advance planning much more difficult.


“I fundamentally disagree that SB 374 makes positive changes to our universities at the expense of Florida’s community colleges. Like Governor Scott, many members of the Senate attended our state’s community colleges and we recognize the vital role they play in our public education system. For that very reason, we crafted SB 374 to further elevate Florida’s nationally-ranked community colleges through a renewed focus on their core mission – on-time completion of vital associate degrees and workforce credentials that prepare students for jobs in communities across our state.


“Our higher education system is our primary economic engine to drive vibrant, sustainable economic development and growth in high-paying jobs. I will continue my commitment to Florida's students and our colleges and universities next Session.”