As lawmakers continue to finalize the language on the budget deal struck yesterday, Ocala/Marion County State Representative Dennis Baxley says everyone had to make concessions.
“If I had any regret, I wish we had a stronger message for law enforcement and firefighters and public workers- that we do value and cherish their efforts- but we simply don’t have the money to do what we would like to do for them right now,” he says.
He says there were also many changes made from the Governor’s budget proposal, including fewer tax cuts, but this budget is a good middle ground that should be well received by all parties.
“We’ve had to make some decisions here that were distasteful, but what we have accomplished is our mission of living within our means, not going back to the public to ask for more dollars from the private sector when quite frankly the reason we’re $4 billion short is they don’t have it!”
Baxley says privatizing prisons and deciding on managed care were two of the big sticking points in this year’s budget deal. Lawmakers will vote on the official budget deal Friday, the last scheduled day of the legislative session. The Governor will then review the deal and reserves the right to veto any provisions he does not agree with.