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DeSantis backpedals on threat to withhold salaries of defiant school officials

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TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration backed down from its threat to withhold school officials’ salaries if they resist his anti-mask rule, saying instead that the defiant officials should be responsible for the “consequences of their decisions.”

The move by the governor’s office represents a tacit acknowledgement that it legally can’t take away the salaries of school board members and others despite previously threatening to. DeSantis could levy hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines against school districts for disobeying his mask orders, but it would be up for the board leaders themselves to cut their own pay.

“The entire school district community shouldn’t suffer just because a few activist, anti-science school board members want to impose overreaching mandates on every student,” said DeSantis spokesperson Christina Pushaw in a statement to POLITICO.

In her statement, Pushaw said the education officials in question “are not on the state payroll, so this form of penalty is the most narrowly tailored approach that the state can take.”


© Politico

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