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Governor vetoes some local funding priorities but restores school funding

Photo courtesy of the Office of Governor Ron DeSantis

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

Governor Ron DeSantis signed the Fiscal Year 2022-2023 budget today and also announced an extensive veto list, totaling $3.1 billion, setting a new record “by a wide margin.”

Among the local projects vetoed were the City of Gainesville’s Community Resource Paramedic Program at $260,000. The program was one of the City of Gainesville’s priorities at the 2021 legislative delegation meeting.

Senator Keith Perry’s $11,500,000 request for 9.7 miles of pavement restoration on CR 232 between CR 241 and the county line was also vetoed.

Additional local vetoes included $30,000,000 for the University of Florida Music Building, $1 million for a Payne Prairie Bald Eagle Commemoration Statue, and $350,000 for restoration of the Gainesville Women’s Club.

However, the Alachua County School Board will be breathing easier after the governor restored School Recognition Program funding that the legislature cut from school districts that imposed mask mandates on students. The legislature cut $200,000,000 statewide, and the school district did not specify how much of that would have been withheld from Alachua County Public Schools, but the governor restored the money, stating in a letter that the existing statute designates the funds for schools that earn high grades, not for districts: “My approval and your subsequent implementation of this funding must rely on the plain language that districts’ actions do not impact schools’ eligibility.”

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