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Florida lawmakers open debate on $91.1 billion budget

Florida Legislature approves slavery memorial for Capitol
Posted at 2:11 PM, May 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-03 14:11:38-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida lawmakers have opened debate on a final $91.1 billion budget that will be put to a final vote on Saturday.

The Republican-led House and Senate reached an agreement on the spending blueprint earlier this week, but it cannot pass until after a required 72-hour "cooling off" period. Lawmakers began debate Friday so the only thing remaining is a final vote on the session's 61st day.

The budget has significant Democratic support, with some criticism over its failure to give state workers an across-the-board pay raise, meager funding for many historically black universities and other issues.

Public schools' main account would get $783 million more than last year. The budget also has $682 million for Everglades restoration, water quality and other environmental needs and $220 million for Hurricane Michael recovery.

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