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Crist Vetoes Spending Cuts

January 27th, 2009 by flanews

Florida’s schools, hospitals and prisons will have less money to get through the fiscal year that ends June 30th. Governor Charlie Crist signed a budget reduction package Tuesday. The package includes 1.1 billion dollars in spending reductions, but as Whitney Ray tells us, the cuts were deeper before Crist used his veto pen.

Hear it Here: Crist Vetoes Spending Cuts

Public schools won a small budget battle Tuesday as Governor Charlie Crist vetoed 29 million dollars in education spending cuts. 23 million health care dollars were spared. So was environmental spending. Crist also saved probation officers from the budget ax.

“In the area of public safety, I’m preserving 16.2 million dollars and preventing the layoffs of 118 probation officers,” said Crist.

The Florida Police Benevolent Association is applauding the vetoes. The group says cutting the positions would have jeopardized public safety.

“The Probation officers are very happy with his decision. He’s always said he’s the public safety governor and he proved it with this restoration of funding,” said PBA Spokesman Matt Puckett.

All together Crist saved 90 million dollars from being cut. The Governor is keeping a 10 million dollar business loan program aimed at creating jobs.

Crist defended the program House Democrats say should be put off till the economy improves.

“I think it really will make a difference to small businesses having the opportunity to hire more people and create more jobs for Florida’s economy,” said Crist.

In the end, even some the winners are losers. Schools will still lose more than 400 million dollars. Health care and public safety agencies will have to tighten their belts…and drivers will see an increase in traffic fines to help save courts and prisons.

The legislature passed a 300 million dollar buffer. Crist cut into 90 million of that, leaving the state 210 million dollars ahead for the year.

Posted in Business, Charlie Crist, Children, Criminal Justice, Economy, Education, Environment, Health, Highways, Legislature, State Budget, State News, Transportation, Wildlife | No Comments »

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