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Florida AG battling with Legislature over settlement

10:43 PM, Aug 6, 2012   |    comments
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is quietly battling the GOP-controlled Legislature over more than $300 million intended to help homeowners.

Florida is receiving $334 million as part of its share of a national $25 billion settlement with five of the nation's largest banks.

But despite the settlement being finalized months ago, Bondi has not yet announced any plans on how the state's share would be spent.

That's because Bondi - the state's top legal officer - has asserted that her office can spend the money without first getting approval from state legislators.

Legislative leaders, however, contend that Florida's constitution gives the Legislature the power to make spending decisions.

Other states across the country have started spending settlement money, and some have used it to plug budget gaps.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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