Friday, June 07, 2013

Rick Scott Should Fact-Check Himself

It would be nice if Florida had a governor that actually knew what he was talking about about. Gov. Rick Scott has been complaining that Florida would have to pay for calling up the National Guard, in the event of an emergency. Scott was wrong before about the cost of Medicaid expansion.

Florida’s Republican Gov. Rick Scott has rejected the Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. And now he’s in hot water for apparently inflating the cost of the expansion to Floridians in order to justify his decision.

The website Health News Florida reported Tuesday that Scott was warned in letters by the state legislature’s top economist and budget analyst that his administration’s figure — that the expansion would cost the state $26 billion over 10 years — was false.

Scott was forced to backtrack on his overblown estimates on what Medicaid expansion would cost Florida. Once again Scott is fact-checked. This time by Sen. Bill Nelson. In a letter, Nelson informs Scott that FEMA would pick up the cost of calling up the National Guard.

June 7, 2013

The Honorable Rick Scott Governor of Florida The Capitol 400 S. Monroe Street Tallahassee, Florida 32399


Dear Gov. Scott:

I appreciate your letter of June 5, echoing the concerns Maj. Gen. Emmett R. Titshaw Jr. publicly expressed about sequestration in his opinion column published last month by the National Guard Association of The United States.

I have had my staff examining the Florida National Guard’s risk assessment and requests for relief, as well as the Department of Defense’s consideration of those requests; and, any actions taken by authorities so far to mitigate possible readiness risks during the 2013 hurricane season.

As was reported today by Gannett newspapers in Florida, Sen. Marco Rubio and I both agree nothing can be changed right now with only a few months left in this fiscal year.

Instead, you could be enormously helpful by urging some of the Florida Republican members of Congress to get rid of the sequester by exploring with us more sensible and strategic ways to reduce the budget for the next fiscal year, starting Oct. 1.

Regarding your concern about increased costs to the state, let me share with you what I have received from the legal office of FEMA Director Craig Fugate. If you as Governor activate the National Guard in anticipation of a federal disaster, the state’s costs, including the costs to recall any furloughed Guardsmen, will be fully reimbursable by FEMA.

Specifically: “For the purposes of FEMA Public Assistance (PA) Emergency Work reimbursement, the National Guard must be activated by the Governor to conduct disaster related emergency work. This would include the activation of National Guardsmen who are on furlough (dual status technicians).

“Under a Presidential disaster declaration, FEMA reimburses the State (Grantee), subject to the State cost-share, for costs in excess of those incurred for weekend drills and annual training and other non-disaster related activations.”

Again, thank you for your letter in support of our ongoing efforts to define and explore alternatives.


Bill Nelson

It is embarrassing Florida has a governor that is this constantly misinformed. Doesn't anyone in Scott's office clear the governor's statements? It would save Scott from making a fool of himself.

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