Another Unkind of Cut –
May 25, 2018 – Gov. Rick Scott and leaders of the Florida House rejected appeals to save $28 million in prison programs Friday, choosing instead to allow hundreds of layoffs at inmate transition and treatment programs throughout the state when the programs close at the end of June. The cuts offered up by the Florida Department of Corrections will reduce access to dozens of privately run programs that had a proven track record of preventing offenders from returning to crime and drugs.
They will also achieve what FDC Secretary Julie Jones has tried and failed to do since 2016: sever the state’s dependence on non-profit community providers, allowing the state to develop its own yet-to-be created programs at what Jones believes will be less cost behind the prison gates. The Florida Senate tried to find an alternative “that would have allowed other services to remain intact during the upcoming fiscal year,” said Katie Betta, the Senate communications director on Friday. But when the governor and House leadership disagreed by the Friday deadline, state law allowed the cuts to go forward.