Dems complaint of Scott’s budget: Too much to be true

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Several Senate Democrats complained Tuesday that Governor Rick Scott’s proposed $74 billion budget includes money the state may not have and said it was a feel-good, but unrealistic suggestion. Things in his proposed spending plan “smack of politics and it’s likely we won’t even be able to do them,” lamented Sen. Darren Soto during a caucus meeting. “It’s a set-up. There’s funny money in this current budget.” Soto said revenue estimates project no more than $71 billion being available.

Scott’s proposed budget would spend $2.3 billion more in general revenue than current year spending, while state economists have projected general revenue growth of $1.2 billion. The governor’s budget counts growth in money left last year in cash reserves, money from a national mortgage settlement, sweeps of unused money in trust funds, and about $1 billion more in federal money, mostly in Medicaid. The budget also includes nearly a $1 billion increase in transportation spending, partly through bonding. Sen. Arthenia Joyner also said the Scott proposal was politically-motivated. “This is a continuation of his pie-in-the sky gift to people,” Joyner said.

Material from the News Service of Florida was used in this post.

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Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.