Florida House and Senate leaders have set aside less money for education in their initial budget outlines than did Gov. Rick Scott.
Both House and Senate leaders have expressed doubts about Scott’s $480 million plan to give teachers a $2,500 across-the-board raise. Scott’s budget would have spent $14.3 billion on education.
House Appropriations education committee chairman Erik Fresen, R-Miami, told the Times/Herald Tallahassee bureau that there will likely still be teacher raises.
“In my allocation, I should have enough money to be able to thoughtfully address additions to teacher salaries,” Fresen said.
But Fresen wouldn’t say how much would go toward teacher raises, or how the House would distribute the money. Fresen has expressed reservations about across-the-board salary increases; he is a strong supporter of merit pay.
The House budget allocation also sets aside enough money to restore the $300 million cuts to higher education in the current budget.
The Senate set aside $14.2 billion of general fund revenue for education, slightly more than the House’s $14 billion, according to the Times/Herald.