Governor's Budget Pumps Up Education

Charlie Crist
TALLAHASSEE (2009-02-20) -

The governor wants to spend $66.5 billion in the upcoming fiscal year. And he's counting on a couple of sources to plug the expected $5 billion deficit as the state's economy continues to reel. One is getting lawmakers to approve an agreement with the Seminole Indian tribe that would allow them to continue offering card games such as blackjack.

The other is getting $4.7 billion in each of the next three years from the federal stimulus package.

"That's an enormous shot in the arm," Crist says. "And a shot in the arm again, and a shot in the arm again. The blessing is, because of that, we have the opportunity to increase education funding for our over 2.5 million schoolchildren."

The governor is proposing spending more than $31 billion on education. He says that would be nearly a three percent increase over money currently being spent per student.

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