Florida's growing budget deficit, now estimated to be $3.6 billion, looks certain to squash Gov. Rick Scott's signature campaign pledge, to roll back property levies and eliminate the state's corporate income tax, leading senators said on Wednesday.
The Senate Regulated Industries Committee is beginning to look at research compiled by its staff that poses a variety of options the Legislature could consider if it wants to expand gaming, including opening the door for huge hotel and casino chains like Las Vegas Sands or Wynn Resorts to enter the Florida market.
The first of three immigration meetings set for Monday will be the Senate's first look at a debate over a comprehensive Arizona-style measure, a topic that Gov. Rick Scott made one of the biggest social issues of his campaign for governor.
Gov. Rick Scott's decision to freeze rule making for agencies under his purview is drawing heat from some, even within his own party. Scott, who signed the executive order shortly after his swearing-in on Tuesday, said the purpose was to be fiscally responsible, even as an evaluation of all rules and regulations takes place.
Even as Gov. Rick Scott promised total openness as governor, reporters had limited to access to inaugural events in state buildings over the past two days and some were even escorted out of events, after they had already entered. Scott managed to attend 12 public inaugural events without pausing once to answer reporters' questions.
Rick Scott was sworn in on Tuesday as Florida's 45th Governor before several hundred state officials, private sector leaders and community members. At times, seemingly nervous, unprepared and flubbing several of his lines, Scott's speech was dominated by the issue of creating jobs for the more than 1 million Floridians out of work.
Governor-elect Rick Scott began two days of inaugural events on Monday morning, departing from the Governor's Mansion, although he doesn't officially take office until Tuesday when he takes to oath of office. Scott who campaigned on a theme, Let's get to Work", appeared anxious to get going, beginning with an early morning walk with his yellow lab Reagan on the Mansion grounds.
As Gov.-elect Rick Scott readies for his January 4th inauguration, he is likely to face a myriad of challenges from an impatient public early in his term. Among them, the promise of 700,000 additional jobs will no doubt loom large for the "Jobs Governor" in a state where more than 1 million are out of work.