Gov. Rick Scott Slashes Budget For Services To The Severely Disabled

Boy, and you thought the deposition Rick Scott gave in the anti-trust suit against Columbia/HCA Health was sleazy? What he's doing to disabled people in Florida really takes the cake.

You know, I've seen a lot of really awful things done by Republican governors in the past few months, but this really, really takes the cake:

Florida Gov. Rick Scott ordered deep cuts Thursday to programs that serve tens of thousands of residents with Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, autism and other developmental disabilities.

Though a range of state services face cuts from this year's Legislature, the governor invoked his emergency powers to order the state Agency for Persons with Disabilities to immediately roll back payments to group homes and social workers by 15 percent — an amount providers say could put them out of business and threaten their clients' safety.

"lt's not like, 'Gee, does this mean I have to skip a vacation this year?'" said Amy Van Bergen, executive director of the Down Syndrome Association of Central Florida. "Potentially, these cuts have life and death implications for these people."

An estimated 30,000 Floridians with severe developmental disabilities receive services that help them live outside of nursing homes — typically with family or in small group homes. Aides help them eat, bathe, take medication and otherwise care for themselves.

Yes, but are they a PROFIT CENTER? I think not! And the new Republican governor says he's running the state like a business.

Yes, Gov. Rick "I'm Running Florida Just Like I Ran My Fraudulent Healthcare Business" Scott thinks the agency simply spends too much money. The agency responds that the legislature routinely underestimates the actual needs instead of creating an honest budget. Hmm, who to believe?

Considering that 19,000 disabled people are on the waiting list for state services, I'm going to go with the "underfunding services" explanation!

And for even more Florida fun?

A House bill that would give the governor and Cabinet more power to repeal rules passed through a subcommittee with no discussion.

HB 993 would allow Cabinet members during their first six months in office to repeal rules if they are obsolete or if they conflict with policies they are trying to implement. The repeal could be challenged, but Cabinet members could individually override the challenge. An objection to the override could be filed with the 1st District Court of Appeal.

Winter Donation Drive
A latte a month. That's all we ask!
Via snail mail:
P.O. BOX 66310
Los Angeles, CA 90066


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service (revised 3/17/2016) for information on our posting policy.