Are Gator Legislators Pissed about the Schedule for Special Session?

Next week, the Florida Legislature will meet in a special session to cut money from the current fiscal year’s budget — taking back appropriations because tax collections failed to live up to projections.

Also next week, the University of Florida will face the University of Oklahoma in the BCS National Championship game in Miami. The game is Thursday, January 8th at 8:00pm.

The Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, Ray Sansom (who did not attend the University of Florida) has released the schedule for next week. At 3:00pm on Thursday, January 8th, the House will meet in session for the “second reading” of the budget. This is when members are allowed to file amendments (most of which will fail), and 2nd reading tends to take several hours. Democrats are especially willing to file amendments because it forces Republican members to vote no on things like helping the sick and the poor — and gives them issues on which to campaign. (Republicans do it too, for things like cutting taxes or cutting spending.)

This is not good timing for the members of the Legislature who Gators. There are more UF alumni elected to the Legislature than any other school.

With second reading on Thursday, just five hours before kickoff, there is virtually no way the Gator Legislators (at least the House members) can make the trek to Miami for the game. Moreover, unless the Democrats break tradition and don’t file dozens of amendments, the House of REpresenatives may still be debating the budget at kickoff.

Now, I know every member to the last man and woman will say it is far more important to do the people’s business than worry about a college football game. And in truth, you can believe they are serious…

But I have to believe some of them will be just a little disappointed they don’t get the chance to be at the game.

Of course… the Speaker could change the schedule… Stay tuned.

About Jim Johnson

Editor and publisher of The State of Sunshine.
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