St. Petersburg Times Online: News of Florida
TampaBay.com
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
  • State slips in academia, university presidents say
  • House may dim Bright Futures
  • Around the state: Anonymous jury to try alleged cocaine kingpin
  • F. Lee Bailey fights $8-million demand
  • Federal jury weighs death penalty
  • Legislature: Senate panel okays bill allowing slots at tracks
  • Legislature: Textbook-buying system might be revamped

  • From the state wire

  • Hurricane Jeanne appears on track to hit Florida's east coast
  • Rumor mill working overtime after Florida hurricanes
  • Developments associated with Hurricanes Ivan and Jeanne
  • Four killed in Panhandle plane crash were on Ivan charity mission
  • Hurricane Frances caused estimated $4.4 billion in insured damage
  • Disabled want more handicapped-accessible voting machines
  • USF forces administrators to resign over test score changes
  • Man's death at Universal Studios ruled accidental
  • State child welfare workers in Miami fail to do background checks
  • Hurricane Jeanne heads toward southeast U.S. coast
  • Hurricane Jeanne spurs more anxiety for storm-weary Floridians
  • Mistrial declared in case where teen was target of racial "joke"
  • Panhandle utility wants sewer plant moved to higher ground
  • State employee arrested on theft, bribery charges
  • Homestead house fire kills four children, one adult
  • Pierson leader tries to cut off relief to local fern cutters
  • Florida's high court rules Terri's law unconstitutional
  • Jacksonville students punished for putting stripper pole in dorm
  • FEMA handling nearly 600,000 applications for help
  • Man who killed wife, niece, self also killed mother in 1971
  • Producer sues city over lead ball fired by Miami police
  • Tourism suffers across Florida after pummeling by hurricanes
  • Key dates in the life of Terri Schiavo
  • An excerpt from the unanimous ruling in the Schiavo case
  • Four confirmed dead after small plane crash in Panhandle
  • Correction: Disney-Cruise Line story
  • tampabay.com
    Back
    Print story Subscribe to the Times

    Legislature

    Senate panel okays bill allowing slots at tracks

    Today is the 22nd day of the 60-day session.

    By ssociated Press
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published March 25, 2003


    A bill that would allow slot machines at all Florida parimutuel facilities was approved Monday by the Senate Regulated Industries Committee.

    Although a similar bill was killed by the House last week, Senate President Jim King wants to keep the issue alive in a tight budget year. Some lawmakers view the approximately $1.5-billion that could be raised from expanded gambling as an alternative to deep budget cuts or higher taxes.

    The bill would allow video lottery terminals, similar to slot machines, at all horse tracks, dog tracks and jai alai frontons.

    But House Speaker Johnnie Byrd and Gov. Jeb Bush oppose expanded gambling.

    "It ain't gonna happen," Byrd said as the Senate committee voted. "I don't see any situation where it would be acceptable."

    House class size plan would employ vouchers

    TALLAHASSEE -- School boards could use vouchers to lower class sizes under a bill a House panel approved Monday along party lines.

    The legislation (HB 703) also would create a voucher program for kindergarten and double the size of a $50-million tax credit program that gives businesses a credit for donations to scholarships for poor children.

    The 4-2 vote in the Education Innovation Subcommittee is the first vote in the House on a plan to reduce class sizes as required by an amendment voters added to the state Constitution in November. The dissenting votes were cast by the two Democrats.

    Republicans praised the plan as a flexible proposal that would give school districts options in lowering class sizes. Democrats said voters did not intend to send tax dollars to private schools when they passed the class size measure.

    The bill is headed next to the full Education K-20 Committee.

    Last week, the full Senate unanimously approved its class size plan, which does not include an expansion of vouchers. That bill (CS-SB 1436) sets tight deadlines for school districts to start reducing class sizes in the fall.

    Sign tallies state's loss of taxes on remote sales

    An electronic counter over the doorway to Florida Retail Federation offices a short distance from the Capitol started keeping track of the $40 per second it estimates the state loses every second in uncollected taxes.

    By the end of the two-month session in early May, the counter will hit $400-million.

    The state can't collect sales tax due on remote sales -- those made over the Internet, by phone, TV or catalog.

    The retail group supports a proposed uniform tax system it hopes would lead to changes in federal law to allow collection of state sales taxes on those remote sales. The issue is pending before finance and taxation committees in both houses.

    Print story Subscribe to the Times

    Back to State news
    Back to Top

    © 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
    490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111
     
    Special Links
    Lucy Morgan


    From the Times state desk