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July 19, 2001

CONTACT: Lauren Cain
Director of Communications

Florida Education Secretary Urges U.S. Senators to Work Together to Ensure Increased Funding for State Universities

Secretary of Education Jim Horne today encouraged U.S. Senators Bob Graham and Bill Nelson to work with the Florida Board of Education to ensure that Florida’s colleges and universities receive the federal funding and support that they deserve.

Secretary Horne’s comments were in response to a letter from the two Florida senators in which they informed the Secretary that Florida’s Congressional Delegation does not have the staff to prioritize statewide needs for Florida’s universities. They also requested details of Florida’s new education governance structure.

"The Florida Board of Education is responsible for serving as the single strategic voice for education in our state," Secretary Horne wrote. "As its Secretary, I will be the point person to prioritize the financial requests among our state universities.

By working together with the Florida Board of Education and the Florida Washington Office, I am confident that we can support you in your efforts to ensure that Florida’s colleges and universities receive increased funding that reflects the support and recognition they deserve."

Horne offered to provide Florida’s delegation with a full briefing on the new education governance structure.

"The new education governance structure in Florida will provide a vast improvement in coordination of higher education activities by eliminating fragmentation and isolation among the institutions," Secretary Horne wrote. "Florida’s seamless, student-centered organizational structure is quickly becoming a model for the rest of the country with its emphasis on standards, accountability, articulation and communication. Here in Florida, we have developed a 21st century model to address the needs of students in a 21st century state and world."