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CFO Sink Calls for Our Tax Dollars to Get to Florida for Back to Work Program

3/9/2010

CONTACT: Kevin Cate, 850-413-2842
 
 
TALLAHASSEE - Florida CFO Alex Sink today sent a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius regarding the “Florida Back to Work” Program. According to HHS, Florida has received almost none of our citizens' tax dollars for the 900 projects lined up by businesses that will result in more than 10,000 newly created jobs for Floridians.
 
“This is especially concerning to me as we have over one million Floridians out of work, and unemployment figures due out this week are expected to top 12 percent – the highest ever recorded in our state. While other states are starting to see recovery from the recession, here in Florida we continue to face a growing economic and employment crisis," Sink wrote. “Yet according to data from your agency, Florida so far has received only $1.7 million in our taxpayer dollars for a small pilot program, while California has received $195 million and New York has received $191 million.”
 
 
A copy of CFO Sink’s letter is attached and below:
 
March 9, 2010
 
Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20201
 
 
Dear Secretary Sebelius:
 
I am writing to express concern over recent reports that while other states have received significant “Back to Work” resources, Florida has seen almost none of the expected resources for the 900 projects lined up by our state’s businesses that will result in over 10,000 newly created jobs for Floridians. 
 
This is especially concerning to me as we have over one million Floridians out of work, and unemployment figures due out this week are expected to top 12 percent – the highest ever recorded in our state.  While other states are starting to see recovery from the recession, here in Florida we continue to face a growing economic and employment crisis.
 
Yet according to data from your agency, Florida so far has received only $1.7 million in our taxpayer dollars for a small pilot program, while California has received $195 million and New York has received $191 million.
 
Florida's 24 work force boards have received state approval for 900 Back to Work projects. Pending federal approval, they should receive $195.6 million in federal funds, resulting in 10,590 newly created jobs with private employers.  As Florida’s CFO, I feel strongly that these are taxpayer dollars paid by Florida’s citizens and we deserve to get our fair share back in our state.
 
I believe we have a common goal of using these investments to quickly and effectively work with Florida’s businesses to create jobs and jumpstart economic growth.  To that end, I urge you to ensure that Florida is given the necessary attention and that these resources are quickly dedicated for our state.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
Alex Sink
 
cc:        Governor Charlie Crist
            Senate President Jeff Atwater
            House Speaker Larry Cretul