The Real Deal Miami

Scott may veto college construction budget

May 18, 2011 02:09PM

Governor Rick Scott may veto college construction in the new Florida state budget, he warned yesterday, because the added $134 million debt could endanger the state’s strong credit rating and drive up costs for future borrowing, according to the Miami Herald.

The $69.7 billion overall budget, which includes projects at various campuses across the state, was approved by the state legislature May 6. The biggest recipient would be the University of South Florida Polytechnic campus in Polk County, slated to get $46 million. Miami Dade College would get $10.3 million and Pasco-Hernando Community College would get $6.9 million.

“I have the constitutional authority to veto things,” Scott said. “I’m looking at every line and saying, “Look, is this going to help our state get back to work, or is going to hinder our ability to get back to work?”

The campus construction projects, known as Public Education Capital Outlay, or PECO, are financed by a gross receipts tax of 2.5 percent on electric, gas, and telecommunications. [Miami Herald]