No one is sure how much each teacher would get on one of the cards, because the state would first have to figure out how much money is available for the program, then divide it up amongst the state's teachers. Linda Stewart was just elected to the State House as a Democrat from Orlando. She tells FOX35 she is happy to work with the Republican Governor, but he will have many questions to answer.
"What about the bureaucracy of that? Who's going to keep track of the monies being spent? There are just a lot of specifics that aren't out there for anybody to make a decision."
Stewart understands the current $189 stipend in Orange and Seminole counties often is not enough to cover all of the supplies teachers buy in a given year. Her daughter is a teacher.
"Is this debit card taking the place of that? Is it in addition to that?"
So far, the Governor's Office has few details on how the plan would implemented. Details will have to be worked out with the Legislature on an exact bill. One question coming up repeatedly is how would fraud be prevented with these debit cards? A spokeswoman for the governor promised us a response to that question, but did not provide it in time for publication.
Seminole County School Board Chair Dr. Tina Calderone said the idea sounded great in theory, but it would depend entirely on many of the questions that we have asked and more as to whether or not her Board would support the measure.
One question Dr. Calderone said would be most important is the funding question. She wants to know if the debit cards will be adequately funded, or if this new program will simply be another unfunded mandate from Tallahassee.