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More signs that the MDC half-cent tax bill is dead

As if Thursday's frustrated comments by Miami-Dade lawmakers weren't evidence enough, two powerful Florida House Republicans signaled Friday that a bill that could be the college's financial salvation is dead.

Members of the Miami-Dade delegation faulted Fort Lauderdale Republican Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff for not releasing the measure out of the House Finance and Tax Council she chairs.

"I don't like the policy," Bogdanoff said Friday, saying she opposes measures that could raise taxes -- as well as bills that would benefit only one part of Florida. "I am setting state policy."

House Speaker Larry Cretul would have to override Bogdanoff -- a very rare move -- to take the bill to a vote Friday afternoon, the last day of the regular legislative session. Cretul sounded decidedly lukewarm about that idea Friday morning.

"There's a process and I'm trying to stay with the process," Cretul said, adding the tax idea could use more deliberation and suggesting the bill was in Bogdanoff's hands. "That's more a local issue. Again, it is related to a tax, so that's why we have a tax and finance committee chair."

He also expressed concern about setting a precedent allowing one college to have an advantage over the others.

--Alex Leary and Patricia Mazzei

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