Scott signs tax cuts; criticizes budget, education bills – but will he veto?

Gov. Rick Scott visits the offices of 3Cinteractive in Boca Raton. Company CEO John Duffy is at left. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post)

BOCA RATON — Gov. Rick Scott signed a $180 million package of tax cuts here this morning and offered few clues on whether he’ll veto an $83 billion state budget or an education bill opposed by the Palm Beach County school board and many educators.

Scott visited the motorcycle- and guitar-decorated headquarters of the mobile marketing company 3Cinteractive to sign the tax cut legislation. Boca Raton Mayor Susan Haynie and the entire city council were among those on hand.

Gov. Rick Scott speaks to reporters in Boca Raton. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post)

The tax cuts, approved by the legislature this month, fall short of the $618 million in cuts Scott proposed.

The tax cuts the governor signed into law include a June 2-4 sales tax holiday on disaster preparedness supplies and an Aug. 4-6 sales tax holiday for school supplies. There’s also a 0.2 percent reduction in the state’s tax on commercial leases worth $61 million.

Speaking to reporters afterward, Scott voiced familiar complaints about the budget but didn’t reveal whether they would lead him to veto the entire document — something that hasn’t been done in 25 years.

“I’m still reviewing the budget. I have a lot of options with the budget. I’m still frustrated that the politicians in Tallahassee have turned their back on two very good organizations in our state that helped grow businesses, Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida,” Scott said of the business and tourism promotion programs gutted by lawmakers.

On the education bill, Scott said legislators fell short of the per-pupil spending level he wanted and added: “This session a lot of things happened, done in secret, and people think there was not a lot of input.”

Vetoing the entire bill, however, would wipe out some programs Scott likes, such as a $30 million spending increase for developmentally disabled students.


Author: George Bennett

George Bennett has been a Palm Beach Post reporter since 1992. He grew up in Bethesda, Md. and is a graduate of The George Washington University. Follow him on Twitter @gbennettpost

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