Tallahassee, FL - There's no question the Florida governor's budget is historic in the amount of spending it would cut and taxes it would lower, but that very fact has made it a lightning rod for lawmakers of both parties.
Today (2-10) at the Capitol, House and Senate budget committees met to dissect the most controversial ideas Scott is proposing. Among them: taking 200-million dollars out of the state's transportation trust fund to help balance the rest of the budget. Critics say doing that could cost thousands of road construction jobs, at a time when Scott is looking to create jobs.
Some lawmakers are accusing Scott of trying to tax specialized businesses to make his math work, and the powerful chairman of the senate economic development committee put the governor's team on notice that if they want 800-million dollars to help grow the economy, they'd better be able to prove where it would go.
Senator Don Gaetz (R), Niceville, says, "I'm talking about the kinds of things that he would have in his business, that he looks at every quarter to know whether he's on track, and that some of the rest of us do to. Is the governor's office going to propose those metrics of performance, so that we can have a good business discussion about that before we vote?"
An indicator that the governor's budget could be in danger of being dramatically amended: next week, lawmakers in the House plan to come up with their own list of budget cuts.
In all, Scott's budget proposal would cut five billion dollars in spending and reduce taxes by two billion.