More than 1,100 people woke up this morning un-employed as a result of the reduction in the state workforce under the $78.7 billion state budget signed Tuesday morning by Gov. Rick Scott. Scott stunned both the House and the by his making massive budget cuts that were felt statewide.
A quick look at the agencies hardest hit are the Department of Health, which lost 813 positions, the Department of Environmental Protection, which lost 120 positions, and the Agency for Health Care Administration, which lost 81 positions.
There was some good news on the job front as positions were picked up in the Department of Corrections, which added 163 positions, the Department of Legal Affairs, which added 48 positions, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which added 42 positions.
The number of state-agency positions now totals 113,687, down from 114,503, according to budget documents. Leon County was home to 19,442 state employees making up nearly 22 percent of the state workforce as of June 30, 2014, according to the Department of Management Services.
Gov.Scott signed a new budget into law Tuesday, but not before vetoing nearly $500 million stuffed into the spending plan by legislators. He signed the budget just days after the Florida Legislature approved it during an unusual June special session. State government would have been partially shut down if a new budget had not been in place by July 1.
He also used his line-item veto power to axe $461.4 million in spending from the budget. His vetoes went wide and far. They included jettisoning top priorities of legislative leaders such as $15 million for the downtown campus of the University of Central Florida. Senate President Andy Gardiner had championed the project.
Gov. Scott eliminated dozens of hometown projects ranging from money for local museums and trails. He also vetoed a planned pay increase for firefighters and others who work in the state’s forestry division — although he left intact a pay bump for highway troopers and for some employees in the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.