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Florida Legislature Approves Record Budget

   TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida lawmakers are signing off on a record $77 billion budget.

It was approved Friday night.

   The new budget is 3.5 percent higher than last year's budget and includes a boost in funding for schools, child welfare and projects to battle water pollution.

   Legislators came into the annual session with a $1.2 billion budget surplus. They used part of the surplus to pay for $500 million in tax and fee cuts, including a rollback in auto registration fees.

Part of the budget included a tax-cut package worth $105 million dollars for tax free holidays.  Florida lawmakers agreed to a three-day tax free holiday from Aug. 1-3 for back to school supplies. 

They also agreed on three tax free days for buying energy efficient appliances and nine tax free days for buying hurricane supplies.

   The budget heads to Gov. Rick Scott, who can veto individual spending items.