First DCA Still Drawing Fire

By: Mike Vasilinda Email
By: Mike Vasilinda Email

Tallahassee, FL - Pieces of cement trim for the 49 million dollar court house, six miles east of the state Capitol, were still arriving Monday. Landscapers tossed pine straw around the grounds, preparing for the building’s opening.

Dubbed the Taj Mahal for its opulence, which includes granite counter tops and large flat screen TV’s, the pricey structure cost almost twice as much to build as the new Department of Revenue building across the street. It was an issue CFO Alex Sink raised when discussing an audit of the building last week.

“What stands out to me is the appalling lack of leadership by the responsible parties throughout this entire process,” Sink said. “The fact that no one was standing up to say, ‘what about the taxpayers?’”

When complete, this courthouse will be 112,000 square feet and will house only 120 people.

Staff in the agency responsible for the construction spent the weekend drafting a response to the audit. Agency Director Linda South says she will not resign as requested by the incoming Senate President.

Indeed, South says the blame lies at the feet of legislative leaders, who raided an injured workers trust fund to give the court the money it wanted.”

One of those leaders was then House Speaker Marco Rubio, who, according to an email between judges, was part of a highly successful meeting in 2008 that increased funding for the court.

In addition to opening the nearly 50 million dollar courthouse, the old courthouse will see 12 million in renovations before it is turned over to the law school at Florida State University.

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  • by Anonymous on Oct 20, 2010 at 06:37 AM
    Remember this on November 2nd. The ballot asks whether to keep 1st District Court of Appeals Judge Hawkes that you respond with 'No'. Wasting tax money for his benefit, he has to go.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 19, 2010 at 10:44 AM
    Just another reason not to vote for Sink, add it to the many reasons. Pleading the 5th, isn't not admitting guilt, it is quite the opposite. Pleading the 5th is done because one being questioned does not have to be a witness against ones self. That is the point. 99% of people don't understand what that right entails. Look it up, read about it. I promise you it isn't what you have been made to believe. Vote Scott in 2010 for governor and 2012 for president. We need to get to work!
  • by Conspiracy Location: Tallahassee on Oct 19, 2010 at 10:38 AM
    We choose what we want to believe. I choose to believe a man is innocent till proven guilty. Apparently, in Rick Scott's case, he is guilty till proven innocent. Choosing to exercise a constitutional right granted long long ago, make a man guilty. America is full of people now, but not many plain old fashion Americans.
  • by Anonymous Location: Tallahassee on Oct 19, 2010 at 10:12 AM
    I would like to know where Alex Sink was and who approved the money to come out of the workers' comp trust fund. Someone had to approve it. I don't think that Rick Scott would tell us either. He'll plead the 5th again.
  • by False Hope on Oct 19, 2010 at 10:00 AM
    The legislature wants Linda South to resign, when it was them who voted the funding? That is just a case of the ruling class looking for a scapegoat. That is ugly and ufortunately, typical. I am disappointed in Rubio tho. This just seems to fly in the face of everything he claims to believe in. The Tea Party folk better watch him like a hawk in D.C.
  • by Halloweencookie on Oct 19, 2010 at 09:47 AM
    Anonymous at 10:43, you are zactly right. And how did Scott fly under the radar? He should be in prison. It was his ship. He should go down with it. Not run for governor. He should be wearing stripes and working on the chain gang.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 19, 2010 at 09:40 AM
    We didn't need this monstrously gawdy DCA building - nor did we need the huge expenditure of GAINES STREET or the $17 million expense on W. Tennessee St called a visitors center. The country needs to feed it's people - not live up to HGTV standards. I had loved HGTV because I didn't have to watch that idiot on TV - but I'm starting to think HGTV was part and parcel of how we got into this financial mess to start with - train 23 year olds to think they deserved and needed a 5 br 4 bath home with a first and second mortage!..with "granite counters, stainless steel appliances, wood floors" I think if I hear that phrase one more time I'll vomit. People need to know what they can afford - and what they can't.
  • by hammer Location: tallahassee on Oct 19, 2010 at 09:20 AM
    Sorry sarge, this one can't be blamed on the FEDS. It has the Fla. legislature hand print all over it. The reps. hold office so they were aware of this monster. Now you have the incoming senate pres. asking for a resignation, from a rep. gov. secretary.
  • by Sarge Location: Florida on Oct 19, 2010 at 09:10 AM
    Alex Sink is the CFO of Florida, but the decisions are made somewhere else. Her responsibility is to make sure that when a request comes through, the funds are there to cover the cost. A construction project of this size needed more than a few people involved. Bids had to be received and chosen and to make this type of decisions, there has to be a board to review the bids and make the final decision. Congress had to provide the funding for the building.
  • by anon Location: tally on Oct 19, 2010 at 08:01 AM
    Hey Anonymous on Oct 19, 2010 at 10:34 AM...scott's company has already been held responsible.
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