Governor Scott isn’t a lame duck after all. Today the Governor reached a deal with the legislature that funds HIS priorities at a far greater rate than the legislature had approved in the regular session that ended about a month ago. As the Governor prepares his veto message related to the budget a Special Session has been called for next week which will give the Governor increased spending on business and tourist development as well as public school education funding. The increase in funding for the former two must be seen as a defeat for Speaker Richard Corcoran. Governor Scott’s veto pen was ultimately too much for the House Speaker and his done-the;-line strict ideological perspective to overcome.
Of particular interest to some might be that the Governor has now agreed to sign the controversial education bill, HB 7069 since the legislature has agreed as part of today’s deal to increase per pupil funding. No word yet on whether Governor Scott’s priority item related to Lake Okeechobee flood control has been addressed in this deal. But the signing of HB 7069 will likely irk most Democrats as the battle over the education legislation had become a largely partisan issue.
Ultimately even though this session the legislature acted on its own accord, Governor Scott reinforced his importance to the process and Speaker Richard Corcoran ultimately had to meet the Governor somewhere in the middle. Chalk that up as a victory for the Executive Branch.