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Tax Watchdog Backs Bulk of Scott’s Budget

February 4, 2013 - 6:00pm

Gov. Rick Scott, in releasing his largest fiscal plan in three years, a blueprint for legislators that offers pay raises to teachers, bonuses to state workers, and has received support from environmentalists, is being praised by fiscal watchdogs.

Tallahassee-based Florida TaxWatch -- best known for annually highlighting turkeys in the state budget -- commended Scotts $74.2 billion proposal as striking a sound balance between increased funding for critical services and still striving to make government leaner and more efficient.

TaxWatch, noting that Scotts proposal follows many of their proposals to reduce government costs, backed Scott and the Legislature for efforts the past few years to slash the state budget.

And now -- with the state showing a slight surplus heading into the 2013 regular session -- TaxWatch released a report Tuesday commending the plan for bolstering transportation and economic development, along with the governors commitment to make economic development incentive spending more accountable and transparent.

(Read the TaxWatch report here.)

The reason for the support is that while Scotts budget may increase funding by $4.2 billion, it comes without new taxes or fee increases and maintains the states reserves.

Dont expect state legislators to be as welcoming.

Reach Jim Turner at or at (772) 215-9889.

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