Broward Schools & Property Tax Edition: Capitol to Courthouse Headliners–March 2

Mar 2, 2010



To view a complete story, click on a headline below:


The results of the March 1, 2010 Revenue Estimating Conference have been posted. 

Click here to access complete documentation, which includes the July 1, 2010 Certified School Taxable Value.


South Florida school districts dread cuts

Local school district leaders are hoping this year’s legislative session will spare them deep cuts and costly new programs.

School districts have tried begging for money from state legislators. They’ve pleaded for mercy when it became clear that cuts were inevitable.


Broward delegation to prioritize education, health and human services at legislative session

Amid a $3.2 billion shortfall, Broward legislators will play defense trying to prevent cuts while also pushing for ethics reform.

Franklin Sands, the house’s Democratic leader from Broward County, calls the upcoming legislative session ”the year of pain.”


Legislature opens session Tuesday looking at budget shortfall

Heading into a third straight year of budget cutting, state Rep. Bill Galvano says he feels as if he’s playing an old-fashioned pegboard game.  


Florida GOP pushing balanced budget amendment

After accepting more than $12 billion in federal stimulus dollars to balance the state budget, Florida’s Republican legislative leaders called today for a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.


Fla. budget writers expect to do more cutting

The Legislature has chopped about $7 billion from the state’s annual budget over the last three years – enough to run Florida’s courts and all state environmental, agricultural, prison, and public safety agencies combined for a full year.


Special tax to help education up for vote in Sarasota

A steady stream of voters kept Sarasota County elections workers busy on Monday, the first day of early voting.


Editorial:  Difficult call on Sarasota tax extension

OUR POSITION: Tough economic conditions color considerations of Sarasota County’s school tax referendum.

Too big to fail?


Column:  Education funding in Florida can’t be easily explained

The debate leading to a school-tax referendum in Sarasota County has generated a lot of questions, including many focused on the broader topic of education funding in Florida.


Florida’s class-size battle heats up

State lawmakers face tough sell in scaling back class-size law OK’d by voters

Florida voters in 2002 changed the state’s constitution to require smaller class sizes in their public schools. But after nearly eight years, and $15.5 billion spent, 32 percent are still too crowded.


Crist’s education budget up, but Lee schools face reduced spending again

After the release of a record education budget by Gov. Charlie Crist’s office, the Lee County School District is facing the ironic task of dealing with budget reductions for the second year in a row.


Guest column:  Duval School Board members say additional funding needed to improve state’s education

The Florida Council of 100, in conjunction with the Florida Chamber of Commerce, released its recommendations for state education reform last month in a report entitled “Closing the Talent Gap.”  


Editorial:  State should keep hands off local governments’ budgets

Run for the hills, people. Today, the danger begins. The Florida Legislature is now in session.


Blog:  Teachers won’t like Thrasher’s tenure bill

As expected, Sen. John Thrasher has filed legislation proposing a controversial overhaul of teacher tenure, essentially gutting current protections for classroom teachers and establishing more stringent requirements for end-of-year exams and teacher evaluations.


Voucher plan gives Florida students a chance

Florida lawmakers will decide on a House bill this session that would expand the Tax Credit Scholarship, the school voucher program that serves 27,600 low-income students in 1,002 private schools statewide.


Dropouts: The terrible cost to the First Coast

As if we needed a reminder that education is a better investment than ignorance, here’s yet another example.


Manatee school officials urge parents to contact legislators over spending

Manatee County school district leaders called on parents today to put pressure on Tallahassee to stop siphoning cash from classrooms.


Gambling issue back on table for Florida Legislature

The Seminole Tribe of Florida will be at the center of the debate when lawmakers return to the issue of gambling this year.


New York Times:  States Move to Revoke Charities Tax Exemptions

Faced with steep declines in tax revenue, an increasing number of states and localities are considering eliminating various tax exemptions for nonprofit groups.


Editorial:  Incentives, not bidding wars for solar business

OUR POSITION: Renewable energy supposed to be a boost, not a burden to local taxpayers.

State law allows cities and counties to exempt certain businesses from local property taxes if voters approve a referendum authorizing it and the council or commission passes a specific ordinance for each exemption.


Struggling Miami-Dade schools will get more teachers

A grant from the Knight Foundation will help put high-achieving young teachers in Miami-Dade’s neediest schools.

Teach for America — Teach for America — the national program that places top college grads in high-need public schools — will triple the size of its teaching corps in Miami-Dade County, the nonprofit will announce Friday.


Judge:   I need more facts before approving Orange schools’ desegregation settlement

A federal judge Monday ordered plaintiffs in a decades-old desegregation case against Orange County public schools to prove that traces of discrimination remain in the district before she will approve a settlement to end oversight of its operations.


Miami-Dade teachers union reelects Aronowitz

Karen Aronowitz was reelected to a third term as president of the United Teachers of Dade, the union that represents teachers, teachers aides, clerical workers and security monitors.


Two Manatee charter schools in fiscal trouble

Two popular Imagine charter schools in Manatee County incurred debts of nearly $900,000 and have been declared in a state of “financial emergency” by the school district.


To unsubscribe from this newsletter, please send an e-mail to