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Lawmakers plan budget cuts for controversial State Attorney

March 28th, 2017 by Mike Vasilinda

Orlando based State Attorney Aramis Ayala lost a bid in court today to have an accused cop killers case returned to her circuit. Governor Rick Scott has ordered the change after Ayala refused to seek the death penalty. Now, state lawmakers are looking to cut the prosecutors budget.

State lawmakers don’t have the power to impeach State Attorneys, but the Speaker of the House has said they would have already started the process against Orlando based Aramis Ayala if they had the authority. Instead they are looking at cutting the circuit’s budget by at least one point three million. Rep. Bill Hager is the House Justice Appropriations Chair.

Q:Is this a message to her” we asked?

“Absolutely not” responded Hager. “And in fact, as we reviewed the budget, we determined that they prior fiscal year, there had been more money, more dollars appropriated, as it turned out, were necessary.”

Senator Aaron Bean says the Senate is looking at similar cuts or more, anticipating more potential death cases will be transferred out of the Circuit.

“Using that reduction to set up a fund to cover the additional case load to other circuits” says Bean

Senator David Simmons calls the cuts appropriate.

“ I think that its a statement that is made concerning the conduct of that State Attorney” says Simmons.

All of which has Democratic leader Oscar Braynon calling foul.

“Retaliatory. I hope that’s not what it is, but if they say its an administrative thing I would argue that they should change that” Braynon told us.

Protestors are expected here at the Capitol Thursday to deliver petitions to the Governor, asking him to send the death case back to the prosecutor.

Organizer Christine Henderson told us to expect as many as a thousand people.

“There are people who don’t support the death penalty. There are also people who feel that Governor Scott had a bit of an overreach” said Henderson.

Governor Rick Scott had recommended a small increase for Ayala, but that was before she said she would not seek death sentences.

House leaders call the reductions “a repurposing”.

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