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Gov. Rick Scott Approves Some Transportation Projects

By: Troy Kinsey Email
By: Troy Kinsey Email

Tallahassee, FL - Governor Rick Scott is somewhere between his 'Let's get to work' philosophy and not wanting to overspend on state contracts, as he moves certain projects ahead after careful review.

Thursday, Scott approved dozens of transportation projects, starting the state money flowing again. But still, Democrats want it all to go faster.

A little over a week into Scott's tenure as governor, he signed an executive order putting a freeze on all spending contracts worth more than $1 million, pending the outcome of a review.

Scott said the move, which could hold up as many as 14,000 potential jobs, is intended to save taxpayer money.

"We've released contracts through the department of transportation, but we're going to continue to look at how the money's spent," he said. "Part of my job is to make sure we watch how, you know, it's your money, it's taxpayers' money."

Democrats said they believe the governor's order was a significant mistake, and they want him to get moving.

House Minority Leader Ron Saunders, D-Key West, said the top-to-bottom review is a waste of time.

"Most of the transportation projects have been fully vetted," he said. "They've gone through a process, unlike some other buildings that have done it. The roads are generally in a five-year work plan, people know what's coming, and so, I don't really see any real justification for holding up transportation projects more than a couple of days."

Saunders said that if contractors have to wait for approval, they may give up and take their equipment - and their jobs - out of state.

Scott says he still intends to be a job-creator, but from the looks of things, his top priority now is to give government a shakeup.

"He who pays the piper, calls the tune," he said. "Now we're gonna call the tune."

Later Thursday, Scott's office announced a long list of projects that were frozen, but have been approved.

On the list was a planned road connecting I-4 to the Crosstown Expressway in Tampa


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