‘One of the busiest sessions’: Senator Keith Perry discusses bills passed statewide and locally

'One of the busiest sessions:' Senator Keith Perry discusses bills passed statewide and locally
Published: May. 8, 2023 at 11:43 AM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) -Some statewide bills regard immigration, gun laws, prescription drugs prices, abortion, and LGBTQ+ education issues.

Locally, a bill passed by the legislature and sponsored by Senator Keith Perry of Gainesville and Representative Chuck Clemons of Newberry, would take control of GRU out of the hands of the Gainesville City Commission. GRU currently has 1.7 billion dollars in debt, 375 million dollars of which are for the biomass plant.

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“This is probably the most fiscal, irresponsible, transaction that’s taken place in the state of Florida” said Perry. “It happened under a group of city commissioners and mayors that had zero desire or even comprehension of the fiscal side of it.”

Perry said the governor appointed board will not own GRU but serve as a board of directors. Perry also discussed funds allocated for a stem school located in Gainesville which he hopes can open by fall of 2024. This the school to be the most competitive school in the state and a recruitment tool for the university.

“We have a lot of magnet programs within schools, this will be the first state magnet school. Right now with the funding we have, we have to make sure the governor doesn’t veto that but that will be a program 6th through 12th,” said Perry.

He also said this was by far the busiest sessions in this 13-year career.

“We’ve passed more legislation, the budget was the biggest by far and that’s a testament. We 170 billion dollar budget and when I first got into office in 2010, we had a budget of 73 billion.”

The governor has the power to veto items in the budget and the local bills.

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