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Sunday, October 24, 2021

Will Blacks Participate in Florida’s $1 Billion Budget Surplus?

It appears that under Governor Scott in Florida, things are good and there is a one billion budget surplus in the treasury. It does not matter if you are a Republican or Democrat, there is more money to get projects financed, and everyone is happy. This year the budget will be around $80 billion, and good times are back in Florida.

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Everyone remembers back in 2009, when lawmakers and the governor faced a $7 billion shortfall in the budget, and no one was smiling. There was a catastrophic recession in the country, and Wall Street, and other industries were close to being bankrupted. But the federal government stepped in with TARP, and become business partners with many of the industries and saved the economy from crashing.

Governor Scott was elected in 2010 and revenues have steadily increased on his watch. State economists and estimators are predicting in 2015, that revenues for the fiscal year ending in June will grow by 5 percent. This is fantastic for the Republican Party, because there will be money left over from the budget that was approved in 2014.

In 2015, the state economist and estimators are forecasting that revenues will grow by 4 percent. As the state legislators and the governor prepare for the budget for 2015/2016, the Republicans are completely in control of both Houses. They control the purse strings, and they decide which organizations and pet projects are financed.

Since 2014 was an election year in Florida, it is time for the businesses, friends and organization that supported the governor and Republican legislators are thanked. Appreciation takes many different forms, but most businesses are thanked by receiving a contract or a favor.

“We will continue our commitment to fiscal responsibility with every dollar as we prioritize funding initiatives and seek ways to continue tax relief for Florida’s families,” says House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island.

With the present state of the Black community in Florida, I wonder what percentage of funding has been set aside for us. Everyone knows that in the 2014 election, only a small percentage of Blacks voted for Governor Scott and the Republican legislators, therefore it would appear that our state leaders do not owe the African American community anything.

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But Blacks must remember that they pay taxes, and are an integral part of the state economy and our communities must share in the $1 billion budget surplus. It is important that different organizations and Black businesses start talking to their representatives about projects for our community. Governor Scott and our state legislators have a responsibility to al the residents, even if they did not vote for them in the election.

There is money in Florida’s treasury and Blacks should get a percentage of the $1 billion in the budget’s surplus. If the Republicans lawmakers are putting together a list of funding ideas, it’s no reason that Black organizations and businesses don’t have a list also.

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