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Lawmakers Close Out the 2019 Session, Governor Promises Vetos

May 4th, 2019 by Jake Stofan

The Florida Legislature adjourned Saturday, 14 hours into over time.

The $91.1 billion dollar budget is the largest in the state’s history, but the Governor says it will likely be lower after he signs it.

After passing the Senate unanimously the nearly 18 inch thick budget was shuttled over to the House where it was approved minutes later.

The traditional hanky drop officially closed the 2019 session.

“From hurricane relief, to the environment, to education, to healthcare, to infrastructure; I can’t remember in my time in the Legislature where we’ve had a more productive and bold, bold session,” said Senate President Bill Galvano.

But the excitement over the largest budget in state history was cut short with a promise from Governor Ron DeSantis.

“It’s going to be under 91 when I get through with the budget don’t worry about that,” said DeSantis.

In the end, 192 bills passed this year, but DeSantis mentioned they won’t all make the cut.

“There’s certain things the government just shouldn’t be doing in any level. If that’s in there it’s going to be a candidate. There’s somethings that maybe government should do, but should be local and not state government,” said DeSantis. “Then there’s other things that you know what may have some merit, but I have to weigh would it be better to put that money into reserves?”

And that’s welcome news to some lawmakers.

“The veto pen has always been like kryptonite to the legislature and so we react pretty viscerally to it, but the truth is we put a lot of pork in this budget,” said Senator Tom Lee.

Lawmakers will find out some of what the Governor plans to veto as early as next week.

But some of the most controversial legislation this year like arming teachers, banning sanctuary cities and the implementation of Amendment 4 will become law with the governor promising his signature.

192 bills passing in a session is the fewest in modern memory, and possibly the fewest in the state’s history.

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