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A Florida lawmaker’s proposal to merge several public institutions in the state has prompted outrage from college leaders and state lawmakers.

Republican state representative Randy Fine, chair of the House higher education budget panel, filed a consolidation proposal bill earlier this month, the Herald Tribune reported. Fine proposed merging New College of Florida with Florida State University, and Florida Polytechnic University with the University of Florida.

Several lawmakers pushed back against the proposal, but Florida’s senate president is reportedly open to discussing it. Fine said New College and Florida Polytechnic were not warned about the bill in advance, but leaders at Florida State and the University of Florida were “well-versed on the plans.”

New College president Donal O’Shea disputed that officials at Florida State knew about or supported the plan. “They were as surprised as we were, and they are opposed,” he said. O’Shea has vocally opposed the plans, as have students at New College, who last week staged a demonstration in support of the college staying independent.