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Florida Politics

Budget conference: Affordable housing numbers get closer

The House and Senate moved closer to agreement on affordable housing funding, according to budget conference chair Travis Hutson. Hutson – a Republican state senator from St. Augustine – spoke to reporters after the Appropriations Conference Committee on Transportation, Tourism, and Economic Development/Transportation and Tourism met late Wednesday. “On the non-hurricane areas, for the rest of the state, not in the Panhandle, we are in total agreement,” he said. “In the Panhandle, we’re working on language – and we’re close – on whether we fund SHIP or SAIL, one or the other.”

Naples Daily News

Florida Senate approves bill to allow teachers to be armed

The Florida Senate voted Tuesday to allow public school teachers to carry guns in the classroom. The measure passed 22-17. One Republican voted with Democrats in opposition to the expansion of a program created after last year’s Parkland school massacre that claimed 17 lives. A similar proposal has yet to be scheduled for debate in the House. Supporters say teachers are the last line of defense against school shooters, and lives may be saved if teachers can participate in the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program, named for one of the victims of the Parkland shooting. Opponents argued guns don't belong in schools.

Orlando Sentinel

Some do's and don'ts as the Florida Legislature careens into its final days | Editorial

Time is running out on the Florida Legislature. Less than two weeks remain. Before that happens, we’ve made a little list of do’s and mostly don’ts. Arming teachers. Don’t do it. Teachers don’t want this. Administrators don’t either. Practically no one does except those who believe the answer to school shootings is flooding the zone with guns. This is a misguided response to the tragedy in Parkland. Senate Bill 7030 has plenty to speak for it outside of the provision to put guns in classrooms. Cooler heads need to prevail.