[UPDATE] Scott Freezes Fla. Rule-Making, Contracts

By: David Royse, The News Service of Florida; AP
By: David Royse, The News Service of Florida; AP

[UPDATE] 1-5 9:00AM --

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, Jan. 4, 2011…..State agencies are prohibited from making new rules without the approval of a new governor’s office on regulations that will also go back over every state contract over $1 million, under an executive order signed by Gov. Rick Scott Tuesday shortly after he took office.

Scott had promised to freeze regulations, saying he heard repeatedly on the campaign trail last year that rules, permitting requirements and bureaucracy were the biggest impediment to Florida employers.

In his inaugural speech on Tuesday, Scott again promised to eliminate red tape, calling regulation, along with taxation and litigation, the “axis of unemployment.”

Also Tuesday, Scott signed another executive order making good on a campaign promise, requiring
state agencies when making new hires to use the E-Verify system, a federal Internet based portal for checking work authorization and Homeland Security information.

That order also requires agencies to include in all state contracts a requirement that contractors and subcontractors also use E-Verify to check anyone employed during the contract term to work on state-related work. Scott also ran on a promise to try to tackle what he said is a lack of enforcement of federal immigration laws, and argued that state government can help by promising not to employ undocumented immigrants.

Scott’s creation of the state Office of Fiscal Accountability and Regulatory Reform was his first official act as governor. He named former Charlie Crist budget staffer Jerry McDaniel to head up the office. In addition to reviewing any regulations before an agency can implement them, the office will also review all existing big contracts.

“I believe Floridians have a right to know where their money is being spent,” Scott said after signing the order.

Scott also signed an executive order re-establishing the Office of Open Government, which was created by Crist, and putting in a place the executive branch’s ethics code, which Scott said would be stronger than the current rules. Scott also ordered a “Special Counsel and Chief Ethics Officer” to review a recent grand jury report on corruption in politics and government to recommend how some of the grand jury’s recommendations might be put in place.

Finally, Scott signed a fourth executive order reaffirming the state’s prohibition on discrimination in hiring and contracting.

But the freeze on regulation was the boldest move, aimed at helping Scott encourage businesses to hire new workers – part of a promise to put 100,000 people a year back to work.

“While there are some regulations that are essential for health and safety, and others that are essential to the protection of our priceless environment, it's past time to demand that every regulation be re-evaluated,” Scott had said in his inaugural speech shortly before signing the order. “We will conduct a top to bottom review of all state regulations and weed out unnecessary ones that hinder job creation.”



Florida Gov. Rick Scott got to work within minutes of assuming office.

The multimillionaire Republican signed executive orders Tuesday, Jan. 4, freezing rule-making and contracts of more than $1 million as well as ordering state agencies to use the federal E-Verify system to
determine if current or prospective employees are illegal

Scott, whose campaign slogan was "Let's get to work," signed a
total of four executive orders before lunch after taking the oath
of office at noon.

One of the orders adopts a tougher ethics code and reaffirms
Scott's commitment to maintaining an office of open government.

Another reaffirms a ban on hiring discrimination based on race,
gender, creed, color or national origin.

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  • by Christine Location: naples on Jan 10, 2011 at 05:14 AM
    The welfare system needs to be revised. I personaly know six families that receive benfits who have no desire to work. They suck off the state. Out of the six families that receive welfare benifits 4 adults have severe drug problems. Wake up all of us working are paying for this!
  • by I don't get it on Jan 5, 2011 at 06:07 PM
    Attn: sesame street, spelling has nothing to do with one's net income and everything to do with what known as a typo. Duh. Oh, and FYI, more than 1/3 of Leon county being accessed a 'fire service fee' (which came as a curve ball to many of us stuck paying it quarterly) for $43.00 is IMO, robbery. I am not quibbling at all about about ever needed the fire dept, or an EMT, and the great job they do services they perform, etc. But I've lived in Tally for over 40 years, and until last year have Never had to pay the county "fire Services dept" for emergency services I might* someday need? It's plainly a new tax. Just because the county can't balance their budget should not become our problem and hence new bill/debt. Go rick Scott!
  • by Anonymous on Jan 5, 2011 at 09:44 AM
    MB when you are at the grocery line judging people, how exactly do you tell the ones who really need help for a short time from those that you say are using the system? Do you have a crystal ball?
  • by Anonymous on Jan 5, 2011 at 09:31 AM
    Why can't we stop paying farmers not to grow. Have them grow rice, potatoes and corn. Then we can provide these items free at every grocery store to anyone who wants them. Then we can quit the food stamp program all together. If you want milk, or meat go get a job. otherwise corn, rice and potatoes will provide sustenance for anyone.
  • by Anonymous on Jan 5, 2011 at 09:30 AM
    yup: Not everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. Those must be earned. We don't give out doctorates just for the sake of it, they must be earned. I can name off 100s of people that don't deserve either. Our current president has done nothing to earn either from me. I am all for helping those who fall into an unseen slump and have exhausted their safety net. I do have a problem with those who expect help, but never planned for shortcomings. Both my parents were recently laid off, neither have requested assistance from government. They had saved funds as a safety net that could get them through close to 15 months without any income (if necessary). The rest of our family will sacrifice for them as needed. I have problems with those who feel entitled to a good life. You are entitled to the opportunity to EARN a good life. Not all will have one, just the way the world turns.
  • by yup, still a bleeding heart liberal on Jan 5, 2011 at 08:31 AM
    Statistical data does not support your assertions, MB. Children born in households who receive TANF assistance are not significantly more likely to receive TANF assistance as adults. In fact, quite the opposite is true. As I wrote earlier, there are rare individuals who game the system; but they are the exception and not the rule. As @your neighbor stated, receiving aid can be a humbling and embarrassing experience, so why judge people when they need a little help? Everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. With that said, I'm going to go out now (on your advice) and give a couple dollars of my hard-earned money to that homeless guy on tennesse and gadsen street without judgement
  • by BOB Location: HAVANA on Jan 5, 2011 at 07:46 AM
    i think that he should not rest till he makes fl goverment a service to the people not the people a service to gov like it is now the next thing he should do is replace property tax with a small increase in sales tax so that we may own our property free and clear THE WAY IT SHOULD BE IN AMERICA
  • by ?? Location: sesame street on Jan 5, 2011 at 06:50 AM
    @ i don't get it, maybe your math skills have something to do with your financial problems. A $3.00 fee every 3 months works out to $12.00 per year. I have no idea how you got $160.00. And, how did you get to fire tax from this article? Give the firemen a break, if you ever need them whatever you paid will be a bargain.
  • by your neighbor on welfare on Jan 5, 2011 at 06:36 AM
    I receive public assistance, aka welfare, to help me buy groceries for my family. What may surprise you is that I am college educated, married, and employed. I actually manage my money very well--it all starts with simple needs. But last year was hard for my family because my husband, also college educated, lost his job. We were fine for a while because we are cheapskates and cut as many costs as we could. But we used up our savings to pay our mortgage and unexpected medical bills. My husband now works from home so we can save on child care. The public assistance we receive certainly isn't enough for us to live lavishly--it only helps keep my kids' bellies from grumbling. We don't expect to receive this assistance for very long. It's humbling and embarrassing. So I'd refrain from judging others who receive welfare because you have NO IDEA what their situation is. And just be thankful for what you have because you never know how quickly your own situation can change.
  • by MB Location: Tallahassee on Jan 5, 2011 at 06:35 AM
    Bleeding heart liberal? Yeap that fits. Prove fact, give fee money enables people. Human nature. Why work when you the tax payer is going to take care of them. I see it everyday. The use the system big time. They have more babies to get more money. You are either blind as a bat or worse, or just purely stupid. Go stand in line at the grocery store, you will see it. Proven fact they only seek work when the money stops coming. I don't mine helping anyone who is down, but only for a short peirod of time, and only those that are willing to help themselves. Another proving fact, those who grew up on welfare think and truly beleive they are intitled to free load off the tax payers. You really must not get out much.
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